EV battery infrastructure gains interest from suppliers

October 27, 2023 | 13:00
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High demand and the work of VinFast and VinES are helping to ensure Vietnam becomes a regional battery manufacturing hub for electric vehicles.

On October 9, VinES Energy Solutions JSC, a member of Vingroup, and Australia-based EcoGraf Ltd. signed a non-binding MoU to evaluate the development of a battery anode material facility in Vietnam.

EV battery infrastructure gains interest from suppliers
EV battery infrastructure gains interest from suppliers

EcoGraf will support VinES with its graphite expertise and US-patented battery anode material processing technology and VinES will provide its battery materials supply chain logistics, in-country expertise, and manufacturing and construction capability in Vietnam.

The execution of the agreement marks yet another milestone in EcoGraf’s long journey to become a vertically integrated battery anode material producer, consistent with its plan to support localised manufacturing developments in Europe, Asia, and also North America.

Establishing an integrated and localised battery supply chain is our key focus to build a strong foundation for the company’s sustainable growth,” according to VinES CEO Pham Thuy Linh in a press release.

“Having a potential battery anode material facility near our existing operations in Vietnam not only significantly enhances VinES’ operational synergy and flexibility, but it also demonstrates that Vietnam is an advantageous destination for battery supply chain partners to set their manufacturing facilities,” Linh added.

Initially established with the mission of supporting VinGroup’s e-car business VinFast in battery supply, VinES has grown over the past two years and become an integrated clean energy solution provider, with a complete supply chain, manufacturing scale, proprietary technology, and a diverse product portfolio serving multiple markets.

The company is also working with strategic partners, including the world’s top companies in pioneering technologies, for the production of electric vehicle (EV) batteries.

In May, VinES and Japan-based Marubeni Green Power Vietnam entered into a strategic partnership in order to promote the adoption of battery energy storage systems (BESS) across Vietnam.

Under the agreement, Marubeni will jointly evaluate with VinES to, invest in, install and operate BESS at multiple business locations of Vingroup companies to provide an energy-saving solution, load balancing, and more efficient power management.

VinES will be the main manufacturer and solution provider of the BESS for Marubeni under this agreement. The Japanese company also intends to develop dozens of MWh BESS systems within the first phase and expects further capacity expansion in subsequent phases.

In April, VinES also concluded a development agreement with StoreDot, a pioneer of extremely fast charging energy battery solutions for EVs.

The agreement follows the already announced strategic investment of VinES into StoreDot last year; marking a new milestone in the cell technology development between both companies and helping them to promote advanced battery technology and prepare to introduce XFC battery solutions for the green mobility market, including VinFast’s smart EVs.

After a period of trial operation, the VinES Ha Tinh battery factory produced its first commercial products in August this year. This was the first and most advanced battery plant in Vietnam so far, equipped with European and also American-standard technologies that boast an astounding workflow automation rate of around 80 per cent.

The battery manufacturing factory is also expected to provide lithium batteries for VinFast’s various electric cars and buses. In phase 1, the factory will span eight hectares. The entire infrastructure of the factory, including a casting shop, a welding shop, and a packaging shop, is designed to produce 100,000 battery packs per year.

Phase 2 of the factory will expand production to include battery cells manufacturing and upgrade capacity to one million battery packs per year.

With saving energy and reducing carbon emissions a key concern of most countries, EVs have achieved strong development momentum in recent years. Promoting sustainable mobility in Vietnam requires a corresponding infrastructure, including electricity supply, charging stations, batteries, and battery treatment processes.

Vietnam’s growing position as an EV manufacturer, potential consumer customer base, and importance in the battery supply chain has created the perfect market conditions for Vietnam to break China’s dominance in the market, according to a report in The Diplomat this summer.

SNE Research forecasts that the EV battery market by 2035 will increase five times compared to the $121 billion expected this year. EV battery production demand is expected to reach 5.3 terawatt hours globally by 2035, compared to 687 GW hours predicted for 2023.

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By Nguyen Thu

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