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Huayou Cobalt to build cathode material plant in Hungary

Chinese-owned Huayou Cobalt has announced it will set up its very first European cathode plant in Ács, Komárom-Esztergom county in Hungary. The total investment amounts to €1.3B for a plant which will employ 900 workers and produce 100,000 tonnes of high nickel NMC cathode material per year, with a the first step of 25,000 tonnes and an investment of €252M.

Huayou Cobalt have been eying international markets for a long time. The company has close ties to LG Chem with which it operates two plants in China and recently announced a third plant in South Korea for precursors. Another long time partner is the cathode company POSCO with which Huyaou is planning precursor production in South Korea.

Huyaou is also one of the largest players in China when it comes to recycling and has also a joint venture with POSCO through which production scrap from LG Energy Solutions’ plant in Poland is processed.

With the plant in Hungary Huayou is approaching a position where it can completely close the loop together with partners. The remaining component is a larger precursor production in Europe. However, with its large recycling plant in China the company is extremely well positioned to produce materials meeting the requirements of the EU battery regulation on recycled content.

Huyaou’s plant will be the second cathode plant in Hungary after Korean Ecopro which currently is under production in Debrecen.

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