Foxconn Partners With Saudi Wealth Fund to Build Electric Cars | Tech News

Foxconn Partners With Saudi Wealth Fund to Build Electric Cars

Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund and Taiwan’s Foxconn are moving ahead with plans to produce electric cars there.

| Updated on: Nov 04 2022, 17:21 IST
Foxconn partners With Saudi Wealth Fund to build electric cars. (REUTERS)

Saudi Arabia's Public Investment Fund and Taiwan's Foxconn Technology Group are moving ahead with plans to produce electric cars in the Middle Eastern country, a push that could help accelerate efforts by the oil-dependent kingdom to diversify its economy.

The pair will set up a joint venture called Ceer that will license component technology from Germany's BMW AG and design and build vehicles including sedans and sport utility vehicles in Saudi Arabia for buyers in the region. First models are scheduled to be available in 2025, according to a statement from the PIF, as the wealth fund is known.

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“Saudi Arabia is not just building a new automotive brand, we are igniting a new industry and an ecosystem that attracts international and local investments, creates job opportunities for local talent, enables the private sector, and contributes to increasing Saudi Arabia's GDP over the next decade,” Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman said in the statement.

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The country has had ambitions for years to develop a domestic carmaking industry to diversify away from oil sales, but those efforts have mostly failed. The kingdom has recently been trying a different tactic, with the PIF actively investing in the industry. It has acquired a majority stake in Lucid Motors Inc. and is backing plans by the US EV maker to build a manufacturing hub in the King Abdullah Economic City, close to the major Red Sea trading port.

The Ceer venture will bring in over $150 million of foreign direct investment and create as many as 30,000 jobs, according to the statement. It's projected to contribute $8 billion to Saudi Arabia's gross domestic product by 2034. Bloomberg first reported on talks to set up such a venture, including plans to source BMW chassis, late last year.

Foxconn, a key Apple Inc. assembly partner, has been branching out into EV development and production over the past two years, seeing the rising interest in the category as a source for future growth. In its most notable move to date, the Taiwanese company earlier this year acquired Lordstown Motors Corp.'s pickup manufacturing facility in Ohio for $230 million.

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First Published Date: 04 Nov, 17:21 IST