Foxconn strikes deal with Indonesia to boost EV market

26 January 2022

Taiwanese manufacturer Foxconn, also known as Hon Hai Precision Industry, is stepping up its electrification efforts by signing a deal with the Indonesian government to support the country’s electromobility market.

While Foxconn has built a name for itself as Apple’s main iPhone maker, the company is also committed to building battery-electric vehicles (BEVs) and ramping up investments in the name of e-mobility. The recent deal with Indonesia serves as a perfect example of this, with the firm aiming to jointly develop a ‘new energy ecosystem’ in the country.

A prime focus will be on battery manufacturing, including cells, modules, and packs. Additionally, the partnership will centre on creating energy-storage systems, swapping stations, and battery recycling. Foxconn said it would initially concentrate on the development of new-energy and full-battery platform production in Indonesia, producing LFP or nickel solid-state batteries for electrically-chargeable vehicles (EVs).

EV ‘ecosystem’

‘I am pleased with the investment plan of Hon Hai and Gogoro in Indonesia together with local partners,’ said Bahlil Lahadalia, Indonesia’s minister of investment. ‘Their involvement does not only bring in capital, but also shares with us their technology and experience, creating a modern and open new EV ecosystem. It will also provide huge opportunities for local talents and local startups to develop and participate in the national EV ecosystem in Indonesia and path the way for a smarter and more sustainable future.’

The Indonesian government is eager to promote the growth of its EV market. The country has an abundance of natural resources that are required to make EV batteries readily available. Nickel is one of the most widely used minerals for batteries, with the government encouraging investments from foreign investors, including BASF and Japan’s Sumitomo Metal Mining, to set up nickel-processing facilities.

As the world’s largest contract assembler of consumer electronics, Foxconn has announced several partnerships to produce EVs as it seeks to diversify its product lines. The company wants to take 10% of the global EV market between 2025 and 2027. Last year, it struck a deal with US-based startup Fisker in support of a global EV project. Foxconn also paired up with Stellantis last month to design flexible semiconductors for the automotive industry.

Meeting market demand

In Indonesia, Foxconn wants to make available its open EV platform, dubbed MIH, to provide both hardware and software services to companies in the country. The company developed MIH to reduce entry barriers to the industry, encouraging more companies to be involved in EV development.

Foxconn has bold ambitions and wants to position MIH as the android system of the EV industry, aiming to address high development costs, long lead times, and insufficient resources, with its platform. Under the deal, it will also work with electric-scooter maker Gogoro, which specialises in battery-swapping systems.

‘Hon Hai is excited to embark on the journey to transform the new energy ecosystem in Indonesia in cooperation with the local government […]. I believe the implementation of [the] MIH platform, alongside our BOL strategy and manufacturing expertise will allow us to meet the market demand and create a sustainable new EV ecosystem in Indonesia,’ said Young Liu, chairman of Hon Hai Technology Group.