24 September 2009 20:25 [Source: ICIS news]
TORONTO (ICIS news)--The emerging market for electric vehicles batteries is a promising growth area for Germany-based specialty chemicals major Evonik, company chief executive Klaus Engel said on Thursday.
The market for electric vehicle batteries could be worth €50bn ($74bn) in ?xml:namespace>
“Electric vehicle mobility will be coming,” he said.Moves in the US and China showed that electric mobility was not a question of ‘if’, but a question of ‘how’, Engel told the journal. A spokesman for Essen-based Evonik confirmed Engel's remarks to ICIS news.
Engel defended electric cars against critics in
He acknowledged government plans to provide incentives of up to €5,000 for a first purchase of a new electric vehicle in 2012-2014.
But he also said that
Echoing recent calls by Germany's chemical producers group VCI, Engel said he expected the country's new government - to be formed after federal elections on Sunday (27 September) - to implement a similar 10% tax credit for R&D.
Tax breaks and incentives should be flexible and reliable, and they should not be time-limited or burdened by red tape, he added.
Evonik, for its part, was in a strong position to benefit from the electric vehicles market, in particular in lithium batteries where it had invested up to now €100m, with further big investments expected to come.
Importantly, Evonik was cooperating with car major Daimler on lithium batteries.
A joint venture plant in Kamenz in Germany's Saxony state was aiming to produce several millions of lithium battery cells from 2011, he said.
Longer-term, power for electric vehicles needed to come from solar or other renewable energy sources, Engel added and pointed to his firm’s activities in the solar sector.
Engel also defended electric vehicles against recent criticism in
Until very recently,
But now, just the chemicals and car industry were coming together to move things forward, critics in
In a related development, Germany's industrial gases major Linde earlier this month teamed up with Shell, Total, Daimler and other firms to cooperate on plans to set up a nationwide hydrogen fuelling infrastructure in Germany.
($1 = €0.68)
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