(Yicai) Aug. 28 -- The European Commission has launched an investigation into the license of Chinese power battery giant Contemporary Amperex Technology’s factory in Hungary, according to a Hungarian politician.
“Following my complaint, the European Commission launched an investigation into the license of the CATL battery factory in Debrecen,” Jávor Benedek, who is also a former member of the European Parliament, recently said on social media.
Benedek earlier posted that the CATL plant violated the European Union’s groundwater directive, as it severely overused the surrounding underground water by extracting it more than three times faster than its replenishment time.
CATL announced a year ago that it would invest as much as EUR7.3 billion (USD7.9 billion) to build the 100-gigawatt battery plant in Debrecen, the largest in Europe. But given the project’s huge scale, the Ningde-based firm recently said it would carry out the construction in phases.
CATL’s plant is not the only one stoking environmental concerns in Hungary. SungEel Hitech Hungary, the local factory of South Korean lithium-ion battery recycler SungEel Hitech, has been fined repeatedly for serious hazards to workers, disaster management offences, and improper handling of hazardous waste, according to Hungarian news outlet Atlatszo.
In addition to CATL, many other Chinese battery makers and materials providers have been investing in Hungary. They include Eve Energy, Sunwoda Electronic, BYD, and Huayou Cobalt.
Editor: Futura Costaglione