According to Bloomberg, Reuters and other reports, Ford and CATL plan to build a $3.5 billion lithium iron phosphate plant in the Marshall, Michigan area, which will end a months-long and intense site selection process.
The plant will be located about 100 miles west of Detroit and is expected to create about 2,500 jobs, people familiar with the matter said, adding that the agreement will be announced as early as next Monday. Both Ford and CATL declined to comment.
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It was previously reported that the two parties are exploring a new ownership structure for the cooperative factory, that is, Ford will obtain 100% of the factory’s equity, including buildings and infrastructure, but the factory will be operated by CATL and retain its battery manufacturing technology.
In simple terms, such an arrangement would make the facility eligible for production tax credits under the new Inflation Cut Act, while not requiring CATL’s direct financial investment.
The U.S. government enacted the “Inflation Reduction Act” in August last year, which included a subsidy of 430 billion U.S. dollars (currently about 2.92 trillion yuan) to support electric vehicles, key minerals, and clean energy. and the production and investment of power generation facilities, but 9 of the tax incentives are based on the premise of production and sales in the United States or North America, so this restriction can be bypassed if the US company is 100% controlled.
In addition, according to the latest requirements, battery production materials must also be mainly sourced locally. For example, the production of electric vehicles in the United States can enjoy a federal tax credit of up to US$7,500 per vehicle, and battery production can receive a tax credit of up to US$35 per kWh.
Last July, Ford said it planned to localize 40GWh of battery capacity in North America starting in 2026. It also announced a deal with CATL to try to supply batteries for the Mustang Mach-E in North America starting in 2023, and said they would continue to explore collaborations around the world.