BYD executive says U.S. EV industry can't decouple from China

Asian Tech Press (Sep 15) -- A BYD executive said the U.S. electric vehicle industry cannot decouple itself from China.

The Inflation Reduction Act (IRA), signed by U.S. President Joe Biden last month, includes a $7,500 tax credit for new electric vehicle purchases, but only if the new vehicles undergo final assembly in North America and if suppliers mine at least 40% of the battery metals for them in the region.

Notably, the bill also mentions that from 2024, companies using battery components that include anything originating from China will no longer be able to apply for this subsidy.

In response, Qian Li, board secretary at BYD Co Ltd, said in the WeChat Moments, known as "Friends' circle" on Thursday, "I don't see how the electric vehicle industry can decouple?"

Li said, "In the electric vehicle industry, the United States is still in the primary stage, relying on increasing subsidies to bolster it, while China has completely shifted from a policy-driven (stage) to market-driven (one)."

Taking Tesla as an example, Li said that if Tesla had not built a factory in Shanghai and relied on the Chinese supply chain, it would have been impossible for Tesla's production to go up.

"Tesla is using batteries from China or South Korea as much as possible, but not from the U.S.," Li added, "and Korean batteries are also likely to use the Chinese battery material supply chain."

BYD, China's largest new energy vehicle maker, sold 174,915 units in August, up 184.8% year-on-year.

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