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Volkswagen: First Overseas Gigafactory Announced


The German automaker Volkswagen (VW) AG announced that the company’s first overseas gigafactory will be located in Canada. The battery production plant will be located in the city of St. Thomas, southwest of Ontario province. According to the company, St. Thomas has the ideal conditions for VW’s third global gigafactory (after Salzgitter in Germany and Valencia in Spain), and the first one outside Europe.

The facility will be a joint venture between VW AG and PowerCo SE, and is expected to be finished and ready for operation in 2027. VW also signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Prime Minister of Canada, Justin Trudeau. As stated by the company, the St. Thomas plant “will equip the Group brand’s BEVs in the region with cutting-edge battery cells.

As said by the CEO of Volkswagen Group, Oliver Blume, “Our North American strategy is a key priority in our 10-point-plan that we’ve laid out last year. With the decisions for cell production in Canada and a Scout site in South Carolina we’re fast-forwarding the execution of our North American strategy.

Furthermore, the Board Member for Technology of VW AG and Chairman of the Supervisory Board of PowerCo SE, Thomas Schmall, commented that “Our gigafactory in Canada sends a strong message: PowerCo is on track to become a global battery player. With the expansion to North America, we will enter a key market for e-mobility and battery cell production, driving forward our global battery strategy at full speed. Canada and Ontario are perfect partners for scaling up our battery business and green economy jobs, as we share the same values of sustainability, responsibility and cooperation. We are committed to be a reliable partner and good neighbor for the people in St. Thomas and Ontario.” This is an important milestone for achieving VW’s goals regarding electrification, as an introduction of over 25 new Battery Electric Vehicles (BEVs) by 2030 is planned. Moreover, the company is planning to invest $20B in Electric Vehicle (EV) battery plants worldwide. Other major companies such as General Motors, Ford, and Stellantis are also planning large battery production capacities, answering the significant growth of the battery market.

Photo by Cesar Salazar on Unsplash