Chinese electric vehicle (EV) battery manufacturer Contemporary Amperex Technology Co Ltd (CATL) has announced plans to invest CNY2.8bn (US$440m) in new facilities in the China (Shanghai) Pilot Free Trade Zone, according to local reports.

The world’s largest manufacturer of automotive lithium-ion batteries plans to build a new research and development (R&D) facility with a floor space of 350,000 sq m dedicated to battery and smart technology development. The company also plans to build warehouses for raw materials and finished goods and also workshops in the area. The facilities are scheduled to become operational within one year.

Company spokesperson Qu Tao told local reporters CATL aims to build green, efficient and smart factories and upgrade key technologies. It confirmed its installed global production capacity increased by 168% to 97 gigawatt-hours of lithium-ion batteries in 2021, while its global market share is estimated at around 33% by South Korean market tracker SNE Research.

Earlier this week CATL confirmed it is looking to build a new automotive battery plant in the USA and has been in discussions with a number of potential clients in the country, including mainstream and emerging EV manufacturers. It already has a battery plant up and running in Germany.

See also: CATL steps up overseas expansion