World lithium battery production will nearly triple by 2021 and China will maintain dominant market share

Chinese battery companies have plans for additional factories with the capacity to pump out more than 120 gigawatt-hours a year by 2021, according to a report published this week by Bloomberg Intelligence. That’s enough to supply batteries for around 1.5 million Tesla Model S vehicles or 13.7 million Toyota Prius Plug-in Hybrids per year, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance.

In 2018, Tesla’s Gigafactory will produce up to 35 gigawatt-hours of battery cells annually.

Roughly 55 percent of global lithium-ion battery production is already based in China, compared with 10 percent in the U.S. By 2021, China’s share is forecast to grow to 65 percent, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance.

“This is about industrial policy. The Chinese government sees lithium-ion batteries as a hugely important industry in the 2020s and beyond,” Bloomberg New Energy Finance analyst Colin McKerracher said.

Global battery-making capacity is forecast to more than double by 2021 to 273 gigawatt-hours, up from about 103 gigawatt-hours today.

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