TOKYO (Reuters) – Japanese miner and smelter Sumitomo Metal Mining Co Ltd (SMM) aims to more than double its production capacity of cathode materials used in batteries for automobiles by March 2028, its president Akira Nozaki said on Friday.
SMM, which also makes electrical materials, supplies the nickel-cobalt-aluminium (NCA) cathode materials used in Panasonic Corp’s lithium-ion battery that powers Tesla Inc’s Model 3 and Model X cars.
The Japanese company plans to boost its output capacity of cathode materials to 10,000 tonnes a month by end-March 2028, from 4,550 tonnes a month now, Nozaki told an analyst meeting.
Although, he added that there was not yet a concrete plan in place that specified investment amounts and timing. SMM has spent 37 billion yen ($337 million) over the past few years to boost its NCA output capacity from 850 tonnes a month to 4,550 tonnes.
“Demand for secondary batteries used in automobiles is expanding as electric vehicles are becoming more popular,” Nozaki said.