In November 2021, Finnish Minerals Group announced that it was negotiating with China-based Beijing Easpring Material Technology on the possibility to establish a cathode active materials (CAM) plant in Kotka, Finland. The parties have now agreed to set up a joint venture company by the end of 2023, of which Beijing Easpring Material Technology will own 70% and Finnish Minerals Group 30%.
Rendering of the Kotka CAM plant.
The plant’s planning has been based on an annual production of 50,000 tonnes and the potential of expanding capacity in the future. The CAM plant planned in Kotka and a pCAM plant planned in Hamina will form one of the largest clusters of battery material plants in Europe.
The pCAM plant, which produces precursor cathode active material, is planned to be implemented in Hamina by CNGR Finland Oy, a new company established by Finnish Minerals Group and China-based CNGR Advanced Material in 2022. Finnish Materials Group owns 40% of that joint venture. The goal of the company is a state-of-the-art production plant capable of offering precursor cathode active material with an unprecedentedly low carbon footprint.
Battery material plants located close to each other have a good chance of benefiting from one another. The material produced in Hamina can be utilized in the production of the Kotka cathode active material plant, which helps in managing logistics costs and the carbon footprint.
The Finnish project has passed the approval of Board of Directors, which is of great significance to our company’s expansion overseas. We are honored to have established a close collaboration with Finnish Minerals Group to jointly invest in this project. As the first Chinese cathode materials company to invest and build a plant in Europe, we will maximize Finland’s location advantages and resource advantages, accelerate production capacity development, energise the European EVB value chain, and contribute to the growth of global green and low-carbon economy.—CHEN Yanbin, General Manager of Beijing Easpring
The project will next move to more detailed planning and to the permitting phase, in which the joint venture company prepares to submit the construction and environmental permit applications for the plant. The preparatory works at the Keltakallio industrial site were already started at the end of 2021, and the site levelling and preparation works will continue through summer 2023.
The initial investment will be approximately €774 million and the planned production will meet the cathode material need of more than 750,000 full electric vehicles per year. The production capacity of the plant can be expanded in the future.
The mission of Finnish Minerals Group is to responsibly maximize the value of Finnish minerals. It manages the State’s mining industry shareholdings and strive to develop the Finnish value chain of lithium-ion batteries.
Founded in 2001, Beijing Easpring is a developer, manufacturer, and supplier of lithium-ion battery cathode materials. The company was listed on the Shenzhen Stock Exchange in 2010. It currently has production facilities in Changzhou and Haimen in Jiangsu province, and Panzhihua in Sichuan province. It is actively promoting global expansion.
CNGR Advanced Material, a technology company listed on the Shenzen Stock Exchange, is the largest supplier of precursor material in the Asia-Pacific region with a global customer base. The company has three precursor plants in China and solid expertise in technology and the ramp-up of industrial production.