Charged EVs | Asahi Kasei to build Li-ion battery separator plant in Canada

Japanese chemical company Asahi Kasei will construct an integrated plant in Ontario, Canada for the base film manufacturing and coating of its Hipore wet-process lithium-ion battery separator.

Asahi Kasei will invest approximately ¥180 billion ($1.14 billion) in the facility, which will have a production capacity of around 700 million square meters per year as coated film, and is planned to start commercial operation in 2027. The company will establish a subsidiary called Asahi Kasei Battery Separator in October 2024, which will issue preferred shares to the Development Bank of Japan to receive funding of ¥28 billion.

Canadian separator business company ES Materials Canada and E-Materials Canada, its local manufacturing company responsible for plant construction and manufacturing, will provide financing. Asahi Kasei also expects to receive financial support for the plant from the federal government of Canada and the provincial government of Ontario, in addition to support under a 2023 agreement between Canada and Japan concerning battery supply chains.

The company has concluded a basic agreement with Honda, and the two companies are exploring the possibility of establishing a joint venture to manufacture Hipore separators for batteries installed in EVs manufactured by Honda and other vehicle manufacturers for the North American market.

“The separator is an extremely important component that contributes to higher performance and durability of batteries that are essential to EVs,” said Manabu Ozawa, Managing Executive Officer of Honda.

Source: Asahi Kasei