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EV battery makers Gotion, ONE plan new Michigan plants

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WASHINGTON/DETROIT, Oct 5 (Reuters) - Chinese battery company Gotion High Tech (002074.SZ) and Michigan-based startup Our Next Energy (ONE) will open separate, new electric-vehicle battery plants worth a combined $4 billion in Michigan, Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced on Wednesday.

Gotion's $2.36 billion plant will create 2,350 jobs in Big Rapids, Michigan. The facility is expected to produce up to 150,000 tons of cathode material and 50,000 tons of anode material a year.

ONE's $1.6 billion plant will create 2,100 jobs in Van Buren Township, starting in late 2024, the company said. ONE aims to develop a full battery-making complex, from raw material refining through manufacturing and assembly of cells and packs, with production capacity reaching 20 gigawatt-hours by late 2027, enough to supply about 200,000 electric vehicles a year.

Michigan will provide about $715 million in financial incentives for the Gotion facility and $237 million for the ONE facility.

Gotion, a publicly traded company in China also known as Guoxuan High Tech Company, is partly owned by German automaker Volkswagen AG (VOWG_p.DE). German automaker BMW (BMWG.DE) is an investor in ONE.

Legislation passed by U.S. Congress in August imposes requirements on a $7,500 EV tax credit designed to spur North American production of vehicles and battery components. Automakers are racing to in-source more battery and component production.

New EV tax credit restrictions on battery and mineral sourcing and price and income caps take effect on Jan. 1.

Whitmer said the investments "will shore up our status as the global hub of mobility and electrification ... We will work with anyone and compete with everyone to keep bringing supply chains of batteries, chips, and electric vehicles home to Michigan."

Chuck Thelen, vice president of Gotion Global, said in a statement the company is "dedicated to bringing world class lithium battery production to North America and delivering high-quality products to our customers in a timely fashion."

ONE founder and chief executive Mujeeb Ijaz said the company is building a raw materials supply chain that initially will rely on overseas sources, with the goal of on-shoring more of those materials each year as it develops North American sources.

Massachusetts startup 6K Energy is partnering with ONE to integrate material refining into the Michigan complex.

DTE Energy Co will provide renewable energy to the plant and will partner with ONE to build a utility-scale energy storage system that will be tied to and help stabilize the local power grid.

Reporting by David Shepardson in Washington and Paul Lienert in Detroit Editing by Matthew Lewis
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