SK Innovation intends to build a third lithium-ion battery cell plant in Hungary. The company already operates a 7.5 GWh factory in Komarom and is building the second 10 GWh factory at the site.
The new, third factory willt be located in Ivancsa and produce up to 30 GWh of cells annually. The construction should start in the third quarter of this year, while the start of production is scheduled for early 2024. The plant should be fully completed by 2028. At this point, we are not sure what will be the final manufacturing capacity.
According to media reports, the initial investment in the new site will be 1.3 trillion won ($1.16 billion), but the total cost, by 2028, is expected at 2.6 trillion won ($2.3 billion).
SK Innovation supplies batteries to multiple global manufacturers, including Volkswagen, Ford and Hyundai. Hungary is in a great position to become a battery hub because multiple car factories are in a relatively close proximity.
However, probably the biggest factor in selecting the country for the investment is something else - subsidies. Bloomberg reports:
"Hungary plans to provide the biggest investment subsidy in its history, Szijjarto said, adding that the government would make the size of the aid public once the agreement was signed with SK Innovation and the process of notification with the EU has been completed."
Hungary simply is willing to offer a high incentive to attract a plant that will have 2,500 direct jobs.
Currently, SK Innovation's total battery manufacturing capacity (globally) stands at about 40 GWh annually, but it's expected to increase several times over just a few years.
More about EV battery market
Updated list of SK Innovation battery projects and production capacity roadmap:
- Existing: 4.7 GWh plant in Seosan, South Chungcheong Province, South Korea
- Existing: 7.5 GWh first battery plant in Komarom, Hungary (online in H1 2020)
- Existing: 7.5 GWh battery plant in Changzhou, China (completed in December 2019, expected online in H1 2020)
- Existing: 20 GWh battery plant (plan) in Yancheng, China (expected by the end of 2020)
- Upcoming: 9.8 GWh battery plant in U.S. in Commerce, Georgia (expected online in 2022) with a plan for 2nd 10 GWh plant. Update from September 2020.
- Upcoming: the second, 10 GWh battery plant in Komarom, Hungary (expected online in 2022) with an option for expansion to 16 GWh
- Upcoming: the second, 11.7 GWh battery plant in U.S. in Commerce, Georgia (expected online in 2023)
- Upcoming: the third, 30 GWh battery plant in Ivancsa, Hungary (expected online in 2024, fully completed in 2028)
- new LiBS plant in China (expected online in H2 2020)
- new LiBS plant in Poland (expected online in Q3 2021)
SK Innovation production capacity roadmap:
- Today: around 5 GWh annually
- by the end of 2019: 20 GWh annually
- 2020: 40 GWh annually
- 2022: 60 GWh annually
- 2023: 71 GWh annually
- 2025: 100 GWh annually and an order backlog of 700 GWh
- 2030: 200 GWh annually
* data comes from multiple official and unofficial sources