Ford and partners pick Canada for $900 million battery materials plant

By Steve Scherer

OTTAWA (Reuters) – A consortium of Ford Motor Co and South Korean companies on Thursday said they would build a C$1.2 billion ($887 million)plant to produce electric vehicle (EVs) battery materials in Becancour, Quebec, which is seeking to become an EV-supply-chain hub, Canada’s industry ministry said.

The consortium includes South Korean partners EcoPro BM and SK On Co Ltd, according to the statement. The factory will eventually produce 45,000 tonnes of cathode active materials (CAM) per year for Ford EVs.

Canada’s federal government will provide the consortium with a conditional loan of C$322 million and Quebec will offer the same amount as a partially forgivable loan, the statement said. Construction is expected to start in the first half of 2026 and the plant will create more than 345 jobs.

This is the latest in a series of construction announcements for Becancour, a town of fewer than 15,000 people on the St. Lawrence River, which is shaping up to be an EV-supply-chain hub in North America.

Canada, home to a large mining sector for minerals including lithium, nickel and cobalt, is trying to woo companies involved in all levels of the EV supply chain via a multibillion-dollar green technology fund as the world seeks to cut carbon emissions.

“This is a big vote of confidence in the (EV) ecosystem we’ve been building,” Industry Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne told Reuters. “This is very significant for Quebec, because as you know the auto sector has been primarily investing in Ontario, but now we have GM, now we have Ford in Becancour.”

In May, General Motors Co and South Korea’s POSCO Future M said they would increase production capacity at a chemical battery materials facility whose construction was first announced last year. Germany’s BASF SE is also building a battery materials factory there.

German automaker Volkswagen and Stellantis, the parent of brands including Fiat and Chrysler, are building multi-billion-dollar battery plants west of Quebec in Ontario, the heartland of Canada’s fossil-fuel-powered car industry that has historical trade and production links with the Detroit carmakers.

($1 = 1.3525 Canadian dollars)

(Reporting by Steve Scherer. Editing by Jane Merriman)