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Hyundai, Korea Zinc partner on EV battery materials value chain

The MoU was signed by Heung-soo Kim, Executive Vice President and Head of Global Strategy Office, Hyundai Motor Group and Ki Duk Park, President and Co-CEO of Korea Zinc. Source: Hyundai Motor Group

Hyundai Motor Group has announced the signing of an MoU with Korea Zinc, the leading non-ferrous metal smelting company in South Korea, towards a comprehensive collaboration across the nickel value chain. 

The partnership includes joint sourcing of nickel raw material, processing of nickel raw material, and ensuring a stable supply of processed nickel and battery materials, and exploring new businesses, including battery recycling, according to the company. 

RELATED: Kia steps up its EV strategy; targets 1.6 million EV sales in 2030

Further, the partners are planning to work towards establishing a stable nickel supply chain at the global level, by jointly purchasing nickel raw materials and invest in mine development projects to source raw materials that meet Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) requirements. 

The partnership to help the Group acquire 50 percent of the nickel needed to produce EV batteries that meets the IRA requirements by 2031. This will significantly aid the group's plan to achieve global EV leadership with the production of 3.64 million EVs by 2030.

In addition, the Hyundai Group is actively seeking collaborations with various global partners specializing in the procurement, processing of raw materials and key battery materials such as nickel and lithium.

RELATED: Stellantis, Kuniko strike deal on long-term supply of nickel sulphate, cobalt sulphate

It is to be noted that Korea Zinc owns a dedicated subsidiary for nickel sulfate production meant for EV batteries. The company is focusing on expanding its presence with a focus on nickel. The expansion includes establishing a subsidiary to produce precursor for EV batteries and plans to build this year a nickel smelter in the Industrial Complex in Ulsan.

As part of the collaboration, HMG Global, an overseas joint venture established collaboratively by Hyundai Motor, Kia, and Hyundai Mobis, plans to acquire a 5 percent stake in Korea Zinc for a total transaction value of about KRW 527.2 billion. 

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