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The European Investment Bank (EIB) has awarded LG Chem Group a loan to accelerate the development of lithium-ion (li-ion) cells and batteries in Poland.

The €480 million ($526, 6 million) loan will support LG Chem’s €1.5 billion ($1.6 billion) project, which includes the construction of the group’s battery production facilities in Europe.

The facilities will be located on the industrial site of LG Chem Wroclaw Energy in south-west Poland and will produce batteries for battery-powered electric vehicles.

The aim is to mass-produce the latest generation of high energy density li-ion electrodes, cells, modules and battery packs, thereby significantly improving energy density, fast-charging capability, safety and cost efficiency.

An annual production capacity of over 35GWh, which can potentially power more than 500 000 zero-emission electric cars per year, is expected.

Teresa Czerwinska, Vice-President of EIB, who oversees operations in Poland, said: “This first EIB operation with LG Chem Wroclaw Energy is significant for many reasons. It helps Europe to build a critical mass in electric vehicle battery production at a pivotal time of electric vehicle commercialisation in Europe; it promotes a shift to electromobility and to a greener automotive industry; and it helps create new qualified jobs in an industrial region in transition to a new economic model. Today’s operation proves that with the right partners and the right projects in place we can combine cohesion objectives with innovation and strong climate action.”

Jeong Joon Ha, CFO of LG Chem Wroclaw Energy Sp. z o.o., said: The implementation of the new investment programme will enable the company to ramp up its battery capacity output to ca. 65 GWh, making the Polish facility one of the largest lithium-ion cell factories in the world. Moreover, more than 1 800 jobs will be created at the Wroclaw site, taking the total workforce up to more than 6 000 full-time employees by end-2022.”