Tata studies building a European EV battery plant in Spain or the UK

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Tata’s chief financial officer told Reuters last month that the carmaker was considering building plants in India and Europe to produce EV batteries. Its aim in Europe would be to supply batteries to its luxury subsidiary Jaguar Land Rover, which has production facilities in Britain and Slovakia.

The company told the Spanish government after negotiations last year that it was considering both Spain and Britain as the two main locations for the plant, said the source, who declined to be identified because of the sensitivity of the matter.

Spain’s allocation of European Union pandemic aid funds to promote EV and battery production, along with its status as an EU member state, unlike Britain after its departure from the bloc, attracted Tata’s interest, the source added.

A company spokesman said “Tata does not comment on rumours as a policy or as a practice.”

The Spanish government did not respond to a request for comment.

The site that Tata is considering in Spain would be an industrial estate in Zuera, on the outskirts of Zaragoza, in northeastern Spain, the same place as Volkswagen (ETR:VOWG_p) considered for a battery plant it is now building elsewhere in the country, the source said.

Jaguar Land Rover and Aragon’s regional government, which includes Zuera, declined to comment.

Spain, the second country for car products in Europe behind Germany, launched in 2021 an ambitious program to attract EV-related investments using mainly European funds.

This plan was seen as a key factor in convincing Volkswagen to build its southern European battery plant in Spain and the company plans to start producing EVs in the country.

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However, the program only allocated 877 million euros ($958.47 million) last year, out of the overall budget of 2.900 billion euros, due to technical and administrative problems, according to the government.

The rest of the funds will be disbursed in new phases and could benefit new applicants, such as Tata.

(1 dollar = 0.9150 euros)

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