China’s CATL raises battery output, sales in 2020

Major Chinese battery producer Contemporary Amperex Technology (CATL) reported higher production and sales in 2020, in response to higher demand from the electric vehicle (EV) and energy storage battery industries, reports.

CATL’s battery production, including of power batteries and energy storage batteries, totalled 51.71GWh in 2020, up by 9.4pc from 2019. Its sales increased by 14.4pc to 46.84GWh over the same period.

The global EV market was impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic in the first half of 2020. But EV producers even outside of China, particularly in the EU, South Korea and Japan, have been ramping up output since mid-2020 as the EV industry is an important part their green economic revival.

Rapid developments in the EV industry in recent years have bolstered demand for power batteries and energy storage batteries, prompting battery producers to raise output capacity.

CATL in February unveiled a plan to build three battery facilities in China.

The firm is also exploring the raw material mining sector to secure feedstock supplies. It will partner with diversified metals producer China Molybdenum (CMOC) to develop the Kisanfu copper-cobalt mine in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Argus last assessed prices for 99.8pc grade cobalt metal, the main feedstock for power batteries, unchanged from 22 April at 330-360 yuan/kg ($50.90-55.50/kg) ex-works on 27 April amid limited trading activity this week. Consumers have shown little buying interest, while other participants are observing the market.

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