Technology

Biden praises settlement in dispute between electric vehicle battery makers

President Biden on Sunday praised news of a settlement between two South Korean electric vehicle battery makers engaged in a costly trade dispute, calling it a "win for American workers and the American auto industry."

"We need a strong, diversified and resilient U.S.-based electric vehicle battery supply chain, so we can supply the growing global demand for these vehicles and components - creating good-paying jobs here at home, and laying the groundwork for the jobs of tomorrow," Biden said in a statement following reports that LG Energy Solution and SK Innovation Co had settled an intellectual property dispute.

According to Bloomberg, that dispute could have resulted in a lengthy ban on imports of SK's batteries that would have threatened the U.S. electric vehicle industry as well as thousands of jobs at an SK plant in Georgia. 

"Today's settlement is a positive step in that direction, which will bring some welcome relief to workers in Georgia and new opportunity for workers across the country," Biden added.

Bloomberg noted that SK will pay LG roughly $1.8 billion in the form of cash and royalties.

The settlement averts a ban imposed on SK's batteries by the U.S. International Trade Commission in February that sparked calls from U.S. automakers for the two companies to reach an arrangement.

"A voluntary settlement between these two suppliers is ultimately in the best interest of U.S. manufacturers and workers," said the CEO of Ford, Jim Farley, in a tweet at the time.

Bloomberg reported that Sunday's settlement followed weeks of near-constant meetings between representatives from both companies and U.S. officials from multiple agencies, as well as Georgia's two newly elected senators, Raphael Warnock (D) and Jon Ossoff (D).

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