SINGAPORE (Jan 22): There is something of a global boom in electric vehicle (EV) demand and supply. Last December, BlueSG rolled out the first electric car-sharing service in Singapore. The real action, though, is in China. According to McKinsey, the Middle Kingdom increased its lead in EV production. Chinese OEMs produced 43% of the 873,000 EVs built worldwide in 2016. With major cities such as Beijing and Shenzhen mandating that new taxis be electric instead of petrol-fuelled, China, which has already overtaken the US with the world’s largest fleet of EVs, is set to pull ahead further.

An integral part of EV production is battery production. China’s lithium-ion battery-cell players now account for about 25% of global supply, according to McKinsey. The Benchmark Mineral Intelligence (BMI), which tracks EV battery plants, points out that the planned capacity of these lithium-ion battery-cell plants is 344.5GWh. China accounts for 169GWh, or 49%, of the planned capacity. Last year’s demand was just 100GWh.

Whether demand keeps up remains to be seen. UBS forecasts that worldwide sales of EVs in 2017 reached one million for the first time and the Swiss bank is predicting that 16.5 million cars will be sold a year by 2025.

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