SEOUL, Jul. 4 (Korea Bizwire) — LG Chem Ltd., South Korea’s top chemicals company, said Wednesday it has signed a five-year deal with Nemaska Lithium, a Canadian supplier of lithium hydroxide, a key material in making electric vehicle batteries.
The deal allows LG Chem to receive 7,000 tons of lithium hydroxide per year, enough for batteries for about 140,000 electric vehicles. The deal is set to begin in the second half of 2020.
The latest deal underscored LG Chem’s efforts to secure a stable supply of lithium hydroxide amid growing demand for zero-emission cars.
Global carmakers have been racing to go electric amid tightened regulations on emissions of greenhouse gases that scientists say are to blame for global warming.
In April, LG Chem decided to invest 239.4 billion won (US$214 million) in two separate joint ventures with Huayou Cobalt Co. to secure a stable supply of cobalt, another key material in making electric vehicle batteries.
Currently, LG Chem is a key supplier of batteries to U.S. auto giant General Motors and European companies Volvo and Renault, as well as South Korea’s largest carmaker Hyundai Motor Co. and its smaller affiliate Kia Motors Corp.
LG Chem operates electric vehicle battery plants in South Korea, China, the United States and Poland.