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Moon visits SK's battery plant construction site in US

May 23, 2021 - 09:26 By Korea Herald
South Korean President Moon Jae-in delivers a speech at a battery plant of SK Innovation Co. in the US state of Georgia on Saturday. (Yonhap)
ATLANTA/SEOUL -- South Korean President Moon Jae-in visited a plant construction site of SK Innovation Co., the country's leading battery maker, in the United States on Saturday.

The facility in the state of Georgia is regarded as symbolizing close partnerships between the two countries in the electric vehicle (EV) battery sector.

The company is investing around 3 trillion won ($2.6 billion) in the construction project, with trial production under way starting in March.

"This plant symbolizes friendship and high-tech cooperation between South Korea and the United States," Moon said in a speech. "South Korean firms are best partners in the battery field. Cooperation in the sector offers a good opportunity for the US and South Korea to develop together."

The Joe Biden administration is pushing to secure stable supply chains in such high-tech industries as semiconductors and EV batteries.

Moon said he and Biden had discussions on promoting mutual investments and joint technology development.

He added South Korean businesses are working closely with the US in the chipmaking and future car sectors as well.

SK is partnering with Ford Motor for a joint venture to manufacture EV battery cells.

Moon made a stopover in Atlanta for a visit to the site on his way back home following summit talks with Biden, during which they agreed to cooperate closely on the global supply chain issue.

He was accompanied by South Korea's Industry Minister Moon Sung-wook, SK Group Chairman Chey Tae-won and Georgia Gov. Brian P. Kemp during the tour of the facility.

The governor expressed his gratitude for the South Korean company's investment in his state, saying many workers will get jobs at the plant.

Once its construction is completed on the outskirts of Atlanta, the facility is expected to become a "successful cooperation model" between the two nations, according to Moon's office Cheong Wa Dae. (Joint Press Corps)