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SEOUL: The South Korean government and its major battery companies plan to jointly invest 20 trillion won ($15.1 billion) by 2030 to develop advanced battery technologies, including all-solid-state batteries, the Ministry of Industry said. said Thursday.

“The joint investment will enable South Korea to start commercial production of all-solid-state batteries ahead of other countries,” the ministry said in a statement.

South Korea is home to three of the world’s top five electric vehicle (EV) battery manufacturers: LG Energy Solutions (LGES), Samsung SDI Co Ltd and SK On.

The trio collectively control more than a quarter of the global EV battery market, supplying major automakers such as Tesla Inc, Volkswagen AG, General Motors Co and Ford Motor Co.

The ministry said three battery companies will build pilot production plants in South Korea to serve as product and manufacturing innovation centers.

The factory will be used to test and manufacture advanced products such as all-solid-state batteries, cylindrical 4680-cell batteries, and cobalt-free batteries, which will begin mass production from overseas production sites.

EV battery manufacturers are racing to develop new battery technologies that promise longer range, higher energy density and greater safety than traditional lithium-ion batteries.

Chinese battery giant CATL on Wednesday unveiled a condensate battery it hopes to start mass production later this year to power EVs.

The world’s top battery maker last month found it difficult to come up with a technically viable and competitive product based on all-solid-state batteries, which are also being explored by Japan’s Toyota Motor Corp. and Germany’s Volkswagen. said.

With the investment, South Korea aims to quadruple its domestic production capacity for cathode materials and triple its exports of battery production-related equipment, according to the Ministry of Industry.

The plan comes after the government announced earlier this month a plan of 7 trillion won in financial aid to domestic battery makers looking to invest in infrastructure in North America to deal with US inflation-reducing laws.

($1 = 1,328.3900 won) South Korea announces $15 billion investment in advanced battery technology

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