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POSCO Chemical begins cathode plant construction in S. Korea

All News 18:01 April 07, 2022

SEOUL, April 7 (Yonhap) -- POSCO Chemical Co., a unit of South Korea's steelmaker POSCO, said Thursday it has started the construction of a high-nickel cathode plant in the country to meet demand from electric vehicle companies.

POSCO Chemical will invest 290 billion won (US$238 million) to build a 30,000-ton-a-year cathode plant in Pohang, about 370 kilometers southeast of Seoul, with an aim to start production in 2024, a company spokesperson said over the phone.

"The company plans to spend another 290 billion won to double the plant's output capacity by 2025, as it expects higher demand for the core material needed in manufacturing car batteries," he said.

Currently, POSCO Chemical has two domestic nickel-rich cathode plants -- a 90,000-ton plant in Gwangyang and a 10,000-ton plant in Gumi -- and one overseas factory, a 5,000-ton plant in Zhejiang, China.

The company aims to increase its domestic output capacity to 160,000 tons and overseas capacity to 115,000 tons by 2025, the spokesperson said.

"We are looking at sites in North America, China, Europe and Indonesia to build cathode plants," he said.

Nickel contained in cathodes generates high energy density and also permits EVs to travel farther on a single charge.

This photo taken April 7, 2022, shows POSCO Chemical officials breaking ground in an event held to celebrate the beginning of construction of a cathode plant in Pohang, 370 kilometers southeast of Seoul. (Yonhap)

kyongae.choi@yna.co.kr
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