Panasonic has no plans for new Tesla battery plant in China, says CEO

It is up to Tesla to decide whether it would use Chinese-made batteries from other manufacturers or get batteries from our Gigafactory 1 (in Nevada), said CEO Kazuhiro Tsuga.
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| Updated on: 22 Nov 2019, 09:59 AM
FILE PHOTO: A man is reflected on Panasonic Corp's logo at Panasonic Center in Tokyo (Reuters)
FILE PHOTO: A man is reflected on Panasonic Corp's logo at Panasonic Center in Tokyo (Reuters)
FILE PHOTO: A man is reflected on Panasonic Corp's logo at Panasonic Center in Tokyo (Reuters)
FILE PHOTO: A man is reflected on Panasonic Corp's logo at Panasonic Center in Tokyo

TOKYO (Reuters) - Panasonic Corp has no plans to build a new battery plant for Tesla Inc in China, the Japanese company's chief executive said, as it struggles to make profits from its existing battery business with the electric vehicle maker.

"We don't have any plans at the moment to set up a production site in China for Tesla's Chinese business," CEO Kazuhiro Tsuga told reporters at a strategy briefing on Friday.

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"It is up to Tesla to decide whether it would use Chinese-made batteries from other manufacturers or get batteries from our Gigafactory 1 (in Nevada)," he said.

The comments reflect Panasonic's growing caution about its joint battery business with Tesla, which has yet to show sustained profits. Tsuga earlier this year admitted he underestimated risks associated with Tesla.

Reuters has reported that Tesla is in advanced talks with South Korea's LG Chem Ltd to source batteries for vehicles to be made in its Shanghai plant.

(Reporting by Makiko Yamazaki; Editing by Himani Sarkar)

First Published Date: 22 Nov 2019, 09:59 AM IST
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