Pegatron, one of Apple’s contract manufacturers, is reducing its operations in China
Continual political and economic uncertainties across Europe and between the US and China are creating a significant impact across the manufacturing sector. It has recently been revealed that such instability has led a number of Apple’s assemblers to shift their operations away from China and towards India and Southeast Asia.
This weekend, Foxconn stated that it is set to invest significantly in India and Vietnam to ramp up its operations there, whilst Pegatron is moving a large number of its manufacturing operations to Indonesia, in order to mitigate a number of growing challenges, such as the threat of US tariffs on Chinese imports, an area of contention which shows no signs of abating. Pegatron has stated that it will also look towards investing in Vietnam and India to ensure its long-term longevity ahead of a tempestuous period.
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Although Apple has not made clear whether the production of its products are set to be manufactured elsewhere, such moves by two main manufacturing partners will no doubt create a significant impact on their ongoing business operations. The company recently announced that it has seen low sales figures regarding the recent flagship models across the competitive Chinese economy, where revenues could fall by 5%.
“We have begun shipping from Batam island, Indonesia, in January,” Pegatron Chief Executive Officer Liao Syh-jang informed reporters. “Whether the US will decide to go ahead with new tariffs on March 1 will be a key impact on the speed of the company’s further diversification.”
Ultium Cells LLC/Li-Cycle: Sustainable Battery Manufacturing
Ultium Cells LLC - a joint venture between General Motors and LG Energy Solutions - has announced its latest collaboration with Li-Cycle. Joining forces the two have set ambitions to expand recycling in North America, recycling up to 100% of the scrap materials in battery cell manufacturing
What is Ultium Cells LLC?
Announcing their partnership in December 2019, General Motors (GM) and LG Energy Solutions established Ultium Cells LLC with a mission to “ensure excellence of Battery Cell Manufacturing through implementation of best practices from each company to contribute [to the] expansion of a Zero Emission propulsion on a global scale.”
Who is Li-Cycle?
Founded in 2016, Li-Cycle leverages innovative solutions to address emerging and urgent challenges around the world.
As the use of Lithium-ion rechargeable batteries in automotive, industrial energy storage, and consumer electronic applications rises, Li-Cycle believes that “the world needs improved technology and supply chain innovations to better recycle these batteries, while also meeting the rapidly growing demand for critical and scarce battery-grade materials.”
Why are Ultium Cells LLC and Li-Cycle join forces?
By joining forces to expand the recycling of scrap materials in battery cell manufacturing in North America, the new recycling process will allow Ultium Cells LLC to recycle cobalt, nickel, lithium, graphite, copper, manganese and aluminum.
“95% of these materials can be used in the production of new batteries or for adjacent industries,” says GM, who explains that the new hydrometallurgical process emits 30% less greenhouse gases (GHGs) than traditional processes, minimising the environmental impact. Use of this process will begin later in the year (2021).
"Our combined efforts with Ultium Cells will be instrumental in redirecting battery manufacturing scrap from landfills and returning a substantial amount of valuable battery-grade materials back into the battery supply chain. This partnership is a critical step forward in advancing our proven lithium-ion resource recovery technology as a more sustainable alternative to mining, " said Ajay Kochhar, President, CEO and co-founder of Li-Cycle.
"GM's zero-waste initiative aims to divert more than 90% of its manufacturing waste from landfills and incineration globally by 2025. Now, we're going to work closely with Ultium Cells and Li-Cycle to help the industry get even better use out of the materials,” added Ken Morris, Vice President of Electric and Autonomous Vehicles, GM.
Since 2013, GM has recycled or reused 100% of the battery packs it has received from customers, with most current GM EVs repaired with refurbished packs.
"We strive to make more with less waste and energy expended. This is a crucial step in improving the sustainability of our components and manufacturing processes,” concluded Thomas Gallagher, Chief Operating Officer, Ultium Cells LLC.