The battery supplier for Ford and Volkswagen, SK Innovation, will possibly exit the United States market after the U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC) issued a 10-year exclusion order that prohibits the company from importing its lithium-ion batteries. SK Innovation, however, can import “components for domestic production of lithium-ion batteries and other parts for Ford Motor Co’s EV F-150 program for four years, and for Volkswagen of America’s MEB electric vehicle line for the North America region for two years,” per Reuters.
The decision came in response to LG Chem’s accusation that SK Innovation stole electric vehicle battery-related trade secrets from it. While SK Innovation could theoretically maintain a presence here, the company would need to rely on materials sourced within the U.S.—a seemingly all-but-impossible task.
As such, the USITC’s decision likely spells an end to SK Innovation’s production facility in Georgia, as the batteries made there rely on imported materials sourced from outside of the country. Reuters, however, added that SK Innovation noted in a statement that President Joe Biden can reverse the ruling during a 60-day review period. A settlement agreement between the two battery giants could also lead the ITC to drop its case against SK Innovation.
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