Honda Motor plans to establish a new partnership in China with Dongfeng Motor Corporation and Guangzhou Automobile Group (GAC) by the end of the year to strengthen its procurement of electric vehicle (EV) batteries, according to reports in Japan.

Through the new partnership, the Japanese automaker is looking to strengthen its ties with Chinese battery giant Contemporary Amperex Technology Company (CATL) to support its EV production plans in the country.

The automaker has stepped up its efforts to transition to zero emission vehicles in the last month, having announced in August a joint venture with South Korea’s LG Energy Solution to build a US$4.4bn battery plant in the US with a capacity to produce 40GWh of batteries per year from the end of 2025.

This week Honda said it had established a strategic partnership with Hanwa, a major Japan-based trading company, to strengthen its procurement of essential metals for EV batteries such as nickel, cobalt and lithium.