“Aspects of electric vehicle battery production in Hungary”, Andrea Éltető (IWE CERS, Hungary)

The significant expansion of Hungarian domestic electric vehicle battery manufacturing capacity by early 2023 has become a major topic of public debate in the country. South Korean battery factories have been operating in Hungary since 2019 with Asian-owned suppliers and further Asian plants have been established since then. This paper presents the various aspects of scaling up battery production, drawing on official documents, press information, studies, statistics, and video and audio material. It shows how the functioning plants operate in Hungary, how industrial safety and environmental regulations are breached, and what the attitude of local authorities and civil groups is. The study evaluates the location factors like availability of workforce, energy and water, pointing out their scarcity. There is also a painful lack of responsible cost-benefit analysis, a credible and flexible government strategy and fact-based information. 

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