Samsung SDI to develop new USD1.5 billion (MYR7 billion) EV battery plant in Malaysia

South Korea’s battery and electronic materials manufacturer Samsung SDI Co Ltd, through its unit Samsung SDI Energy Malaysia Sdn Bhd (SDIEM), is developing a RM7 billion plant in Negeri Sembilan, Malaysia to pioneer the electric vehicle (EV) battery cell industry in the country.

Malaysian Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob said the new factory, which is expected to start operating in 2025, will create 1,300 job opportunities for the locals.

“I was informed that the development of this new phase two plant involves seven new buildings as well as an additional electricity sub station of 132 kilovolts, besides being able to produce 800 million battery cells a year.

“Samsung SDIEM’s commitment to meet the needs of the global market for the use of EVs in the world is a proud effort for the country and the people of Malaysia,” he said when officiating the groundbreaking ceremony for the factory, which was broadcast via video recording, here today.

He also appreciated the role played by the South Korean company in developing industries based on green technology.

The prime minister noted that this was is in line with the country’s goal of becoming a carbon-neutral nation by 2050, as outlined in the 12th Malaysia Plan.

Ismail Sabri said for Malaysia, the industry was important in terms of its contribution to the overall comprehensive EV ecosystem.

“I am confident that the ‘Keluarga Malaysia’ employees will remain resilient and continue to contribute together to developing the country’s economy,” he said.

Meanwhile, Samsung SDI chief executive officer (CEO) Choi Yonho said the relationship between Malaysia and Samsung SDI was special because, in February 1991, Samsung SDI developed its first overseas plant in the country.

Since then, Samsung SDI has become the world’s first company in the industry to develop cathode ray tubes.

“Starting from 2024, the batteries produced will be used in various devices including electrical equipment, micro-mobility and EVs that will make the whole world ‘move’ on Samsung SDI batteries,” he said.

The CEO added that the battery features the competitiveness of Samsung’s “super gap” technology, known as “PRiMX”, an original Samsung SDI brand which would be produced by the hundreds of millions every year in addition to being exported worldwide.

Choi said his party would make Samsung SDIEM a global battery industry centre through the cooperation of all Samsung SDI employees, the Malaysian government and partner companies.

“In addition, in line with the environmental, social and governance oriented management strategy, Samsung SDI is compliant in fulfilling our social responsibility towards the environment, safety and legal requirements,” he said.

As at May 2022, Samsung SDI has invested a total of RM3.8 billion in Samsung SDIEM, while contributing RM2.5 billion to Malaysia’s annual export rate. 

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