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China’s Auto Industry Seeks Tech Partnerships with European Peers to Resolve Trade Conflicts

News WeChat

China’s auto industry is looking to deepen ties with European peers through technology partnerships as a means of resolving trade conflicts. The move comes after the European Commission initiated a probe into China’s electric vehicle (EV) subsidies. Dong Yang, vice Chairman at China’s top EV think tank China EV100, emphasized the need for Chinese government, industrial associations, and companies to mitigate the impact on other markets as Chinese EV exports continue to grow. He advocated for seeking win-win relationships with local companies and suggested that Chinese battery suppliers should collaborate with European companies to establish a local battery supply chain in Europe. Additionally, Dong highlighted the potential of European automakers leveraging China’s EV technologies to accelerate their transition to electrification.

The comments from Dong echo the sentiments expressed China’s EV industry leaders at the Munich IAA conference, where they called for stronger global cooperation and policy standardization to expedite the technological transition. This push for collaboration comes after European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen accused China of flooding global markets with EVs at artificially low prices due to substantial state subsidies. As a result, the European Commission initiated a probe that could potentially lead to punitive tariffs.

Chinese EV manufacturers, such as Xpeng and LeapMotor, have been pursuing partnerships with foreign partners to license their technology and jointly develop new models. Additionally, Chinese battery makers, like CATL and CALB, are expanding their presence in Europe building manufacturing facilities and localizing their supply chains. CALB aims to source at least 70% of key materials needed for battery production in Europe locally 2026.

By strengthening ties with European peers and fostering collaboration, the Chinese auto industry aims to navigate trade conflicts and facilitate the global transition to electric vehicles.

– Article Zhang Yan and Brenda Goh (Reuters)
– Dong Yang’s article on Wechat (social media platform)