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Japan-Based Asahi Kasei Plans Port Colborne, Ontario, EV Battery Operations

Japan-based Asahi Kasei Corporation, a multinational chemical company, plans to establish lithium-ion battery (LIB) separator operations in Port Colborne, Ontario, Canada.

The $1.56 billion manufacturing facility, named Asahi Kasei Battery Separator Canada, will produce Hipore™ wet-process separators, essential components in LIBs used in electric vehicles and other energy storage applications. Commercial production is scheduled to begin in 2027.

“As demand for electric vehicles – and the lithium-ion batteries that power them – continues to rise, we are eager to bring the first Hipore™ wet-process lithium-ion separator manufacturing facility to Canada. Backed by the abundant renewable resources, skilled talent, and strong local community support here in Port Colborne, we will be able to better serve our partners in the region as well as the broader North American automotive market from this facility,” Koshiro Kudo, President and Representative Director, Asahi Kasei Corporation said.

The project is being supported by the provincial government of Ontario through its investment attraction agency, Invest Ontario, and will also take advantage of the federal government’s recently introduced Clean Technology Manufacturing Investment Tax Credit (ITC).

“Over the last four years, Ontario has become the epicentre of Canada’s electric vehicle supply chain, attracting billions in investments by global automakers and suppliers of EV batteries and battery materials. Today, our government is proud to welcome Asahi Kasei as the newest addition to Ontario’s thriving automotive ecosystem. Thank you, Asahi Kasei, for trusting Ontario as a partner in your success,” The Hon. Vic Fedeli, Ontario’s Minister of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade noted.

Asahi Kasei Group operates across three sectors - Material, Homes, and Health Care, and is renowned for its work in battery-related technology. At the core of its Energy Storage business is the lithium-ion battery separator, a microporous membrane that effectively separates the positive and negative electrodes within the battery, thus preventing short circuits while facilitating the passage of lithium ions from one side of the battery to the other.

“Asahi Kasei's investment speaks to what companies in the battery supply chain have already realized – that Ontario is a strategic location to develop and manufacture cutting-edge products for the growing EV market in North America,” added Trevor Dauphinee, CEO of Invest Ontario. “Invest Ontario remains dedicated to partnering with industry leaders and innovators to lead the charge together towards sustainable mobility.”

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