Washington (AP) — Two of South Korea’s leading electric vehicle battery makers have settled a long-term trade dispute, one of which can proceed with plans to manufacture batteries in Georgia, one person explained. President Joe Byden called it a “victory for American workers and the American automobile industry.”
LG Energy Solutions and SK Innovation have reached a settlement, eliminating the need for Byden to intervene in the conflict, he said Saturday. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the company had not announced a settlement. Details were not available.
In February, the US International Trade Commission decided that SK had stolen 22 corporate secrets from LG Energy and that SK would ban the import, manufacture, or sale of batteries in the United States for 10 years.
This decision could have resulted in both Ford and Volkswagen rolling out additional electric vehicle models, competing for batteries. SK has a contract to manufacture batteries for the Electric Ford F-150 pickup truck and the Electric Volkswagen SUV.
The commission said SK could supply Ford Motor Company with batteries for four years and Volkswagen AG for two years.
The decision endangered the $ 2.6 billion battery plant that SK is building in Commerce, Georgia.
Politicians have called on Byden to dismiss the Commission’s decision. Byden had to make a decision until Sunday night.
“We need a powerful, diverse and resilient battery supply chain for US-based electric vehicles that can meet the growing global demand for these vehicles and components at home. You can create high-paying jobs and lay the groundwork for tomorrow’s jobs .. Today’s reconciliation is a positive step in that direction, “said Biden.
Chrischer reported from Detroit.