Ford, Chinese firm may build US battery plant: report

The complex ownership structure of the plant would have Ford owning 100%, with the Chinese firm operating it

Ford Motor is considering the idea of building a U.S. battery plant with a Chinese company in a complex arrangement to avoid Sino-U.S. political complications.

Ford and China's Contemporary Amperex Technology Co may build the plant in Michigan or Virginia to reap tax benefits, according to Bloomberg.

The factory will provide lithium iron phosphate batteries for Ford’s electric models.

The ownership structure would involve Ford owning 100% of the plant, while the Chinese battery giant would operate the factory and own the technology that goes into the cells.

ELECTRIC FORD F-150 LIGHTNING PRODUCTION INCREASED WITH THIRD SHIFT

Ford F-150 Lightning

Ford F-150 Lightning pickup trucks are shown at the Ford Rouge Electric Vehicle Center in Dearborn, Michigan. ((Photo by Bill Pugliano/Getty Images) / Getty Images)

That would let the facility qualify for production tax credits under the U.S. Inflation Reduction Act.

President Biden signed legislation imposing new sourcing rules on battery components and critical minerals that take effect Jan. 1 for electric vehicles to be eligible for the tax credits.

A Ford logo on a sign

A Ford logo is seen on signage at Country Ford in Graham, N.C. ((AP Photo/Gerry Broome, File) / AP Newsroom)

FORD CEO REVEALS HOW MANY DEALERS ACTUALLY WANT TO SELL ELECTRIC VEHICLES

Under the Inflation Reduction Act, electric vehicles and their batteries must be manufactured in North America to get the credit.

Ford provided the following statement to FOX Business.

"As we shared in July, Ford plans to localize and use approximately 40 GWh of lithium iron phosphate (LFP) battery capacity in North America starting in 2026. We also announced a separate MOU with CATL to explore a cooperation for supplying batteries for Ford vehicles in markets across North America, Europe and China. Our talks with CATL continue – and we have nothing new to announce on either front."

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
F FORD MOTOR CO. 11.84 -0.10 -0.84%

The Chinese government has discouraged CATL from investing in the US due to tensions with Beijing’s top geopolitical rival, according people familiar with the situation.

Electric car

The Ford Focus electric, one of four EV's for story on electric cars. (David Cooper/Toronto Star (David Cooper/Toronto Star via Getty Images / Getty Images)

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE ON FOX BUSINESS

The battery maker was putting plans to establish a new facility in North America on hold after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s trip to Taiwan further strained relations between the countries.