BMW, Varta apply for funds in battery cell push for e-cars

by:CTECHi     2019-11-20
BERLIN/HAMBURG (Reuters)-
They said on Friday that both luxury car makers BMW and Germany\'s Varta have applied for national funds designed to support the production of electric vehicle batteries, reaching the deadline set by the German government.
Germany has allocated 1 billion euros ($1. 13 billion)
Support a consortium seeking to produce electric vehicle batteries and plan to fund a research facility to develop the next-
Generation solidStatus battery.
A bmw spokesman said on Friday that BMW is seeking funding for research and development in the battery sector, adding that this does not mean the company intends to produce its own batteries.
He said the application for financing does not necessarily lead to the participation of automakers in the consortium.
At the same time, Varta said it plans to increase battery production to more than 60 million batteries per year, adding that it is working with European partners to boost battery production in Europe.
The company can apply for the funds by Friday.
Germany, Europe\'s largest economy, wants to reduce its auto maker\'s reliance on Asian battery suppliers and protect jobs at home that may face the risk of turning to internal combustion engines globally.
Skeptics point out that as the production of electric vehicle batteries is dominated by companies in China, South Korea and Japan, it may be too late for German efforts.
Two people familiar with the matter said that in general, the German Ministry of Economy has six consortia applying for state subsidies.
One of the people familiar with the matter said that the German battery maker BMW Group has formed a consortium with Germany Post\'s German start-up Streetscooter --up e.
Ford, a German subsidiary of Ford-Werke GmBH.
A spokesman for the Deutsche Post just said that the safety of batteries for its trams is very important.
Volkswagen said no decision has been made and said it may comment on the matter on Monday.
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