China-based Contemporary Amperex Technology Limited (CATL), a global leader in lithium-ion battery development and manufacturing, has announced plans to invest €7.34bn ($7.49bn) in a new 100-gigawatt hour battery plant in Debrecen, Hungary. The project represents the largest greenfield investment in Hungary’s history.

The new site will cover an area of 221 hectares within Debrecen’s Southern Industrial Park. It will be near CATL’s existing customers’ auto plants, including Merecedes-Benz, BMW, Stellantis and Volkswagen. The factory will enable CATL to better serve the European market, boost its global production network development, and further develop e-mobility and energy transition in Europe.

Subject to shareholder meeting approval, construction of the new site will begin by the end of 2022. The Debrecen plant will be CATL’s second battery factory in Europe following its location in Erfurt, Germany.

In a press release, founder and chairman Dr Robin Zeng commented: “There is no doubt that our plant in Debrecen will enable us to further sharpen our competitive edge, better respond to our European customers, and accelerate the transition to e-mobility in Europe. The greenfield project in Hungary will be a giant leap in CATL’s global expansion, and also an important step in our efforts to make an outstanding contribution to the green energy drive for humankind.”