China has expanded its nickel investment in Indonesia to meet the demand for CNGR EVs

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BEIJING / HONG KONG – China’s CNGR Advanced Material Co Ltd will invest in three new projects to produce nickel mats in Indonesia, with the goal of increasing the annual capacity to 120,000 tons to meet the growing demand for products used to make electric car batteries.

In a filing on the Shenzhen Stock Exchange, the battery component maker said Wednesday that its three Hong Kong units have signed an agreement with Singapore-based Rigkeza International PTE Limited to jointly invest in three projects at Wade Bay Industrial Park.

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Each involved an investment of $ 420 million and aims to produce nickel mats with 40,000 tons of nickel material per year through four production lines, the filing said.

Nickel mats are an intermediate product that can be processed into battery-grade nickel.

CNGR has already invested in two nickel mat projects with Rigkeza on the Indonesian island of Sulawesi, with a total annual capacity of 60,000 tons. The company has reached an agreement with nickel giant Tsingshan Holding Group, which will supply it with 40,000 tons of products.

“Both sides continue to be optimistic about the nickel matte industry,” the CNGR statement said, adding that the investments are expected to further protect the company’s assets and reduce the cost of producing battery components.

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Registered in Singapore, RigQueza will own a 30% stake in each of the three new projects, CNGR reported.

The Chinese company did not disclose further details about its partner, but said Rigkeza’s main responsibilities include coordinating with the Indonesian government, helping secure local approval and financing.

CNGR could not be reached for comment.

Nickel prices on the London Metal Exchange doubled to a record 100 100,000 an hour in March, as the Russia-Ukraine conflict has already triggered a rally. They fell to about, 26,365 per tonne on Tuesday. (Reporting by Min Zhang in Beijing and Meg Shen in Hong Kong; Editing by Barbara Lewis)

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