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VA governor says planned Ford EV plant is a ‘Troyan horse’ for China

Virginia Governor Glenn Youngkin is calling for a tram the battery The factory is planned by Ford Motor Co. and Chinese partner “Troyan horse” for China that would undermine policy efforts to strengthen the U.S. auto industry.

The Republican governor, who is widely seen as a possible 2024 presidential candidate, has defended his decision to remove his state from consideration of the proposed plant, a joint venture between Ford and Co. Amperex Contemporary Technology Ltd, also known as CATL.

“I look forward to bringing a great company there. It’s not going to be something that uses its Trojan horse relationship with the Chinese Communist Party for profit,” Youngkin said Friday in an interview with Bloomberg Television.

He also said that the factory scramble would undermine the premise of the recently passed law backed by President Joe Bidenof the government. That act, known as the Inflation Reduction Act, directly subsidizes electric vehicles and batteries made in North America in an attempt to eliminate the United States’ dependence on China for battery materials.

“For that site to be embroiled in what would clearly be an agreement contrary to the intent and purpose of the Inflation Reduction Act incentives – that’s why it’s structured the way it is. — can take that site offline for an extended period of time,” he said.

The proposed plant, which Michigan and other states have also scrambled to, is part of a wave of investment by automakers and battery makers. They are spending billions of dollars — and receiving billions more in state and federal subsidies — as part of the transition from gas-powered vehicles to electric vehicles.

Ford was not available for comment on Youngkin’s comments. A CATL spokesperson did not immediately respond to a request for comment sent outside business hours in China.

When asked about a similar accusation from Youngkin on January 18, Ford declined to respond directly and instead said in a statement: “Our negotiations with CATL continue — and we I have nothing new to announce.”

Shares of Ford were up 0.6% as of 12:43 p.m. in New York.

Youngkin said he is open to working with Ford on future opportunities, as long as they are not related to CATL. He has expressed regret about missing out on other major factory deals in recent months.

“This is not a zero-sum game and I would love for Ford to go to Virginia and build a battery factory, if they don’t use it as a front for a company controlled by the Chinese Communist Party. ,” he said.

Youngkin declined to comment on the status of the site and any specific candidates, citing confidentiality agreements.

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