SHANGHAI: Volkswagen’s Audi and its Chinese state-owned partner FAW Group have received approval from Chinese authorities to begin construction of their $3.3 billion electric vehicle joint venture plant, according to a government notice.
The planning regulator for northeast China’s Jilin province said work on the plant, which will be based in the provincial capital city of Changchun, is expected to start in April and companies will invest a total of 20.93 billion yuan ($3.29 billion) in the plant.
The plant will start production in December 2024 and will have the capacity to manufacture 150,000 cars a year, according to the regulator. His statement also showed that the approval was given on February 11 and the company plans to produce three electric models, including Audi’s e-tron SUV.
“The Audi FAW NEV project is an important cornerstone of Audi’s electrification strategy in China,” a Volkswagen spokesperson said, confirming the approval.
“We are therefore continuing relevant work in this project. Construction of the plant is expected to start in the second quarter of 2022.”
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FAW did not immediately respond to requests for comment on Tuesday.
Audi, Volkswagen’s premium automaker, signed a memorandum of understanding with FAW in October 2020 to jointly produce premium electric vehicles (EVs) in China, the world’s largest auto market.
In November, Audi said the plant was behind schedule due to a delay in approval by the relevant authorities.
The German automaker has a long-standing partnership with FAW to manufacture combustion engine cars in Changchun and the southern city of Foshan.
Audi also plans to manufacture vehicles with Shanghai-based automaker SAIC Motor, with the goal of electrified vehicles accounting for a third of Chinese sales by 2025.