Apple Inc's talks with China's CATL and BYD over battery supplies for its planned electric vehicle have been mostly stalled after they refused to set up teams and build U.S. plants that would solely cater to the tech giant, three people with knowledge of the discussions said.
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The firms informed Apple sometime in the past two months that they were not able to meet its requirements, the people said. But the U.S. company has not given up hope of resuming talks with either CATL or BYD, according to one source.
Chinese battery makers are more advanced than rivals in the development of lithium iron phosphate (LFP) batteries which are cheaper to produce and sources have previously said Apple favours this battery technology.
CATL, the world's No.1 maker of batteries for EVs, has been reluctant to build a U.S. factory due to political tensions between Washington and Beijing as well as cost concerns, said one of the people with direct knowledge of the talks.
The Chinese firm has also found it impossible to set up a separate product development team exclusively working with Apple due to difficulties in finding sufficient personnel, the person added.
BYD, which has an iron-phosphate battery plant in Lancaster, California, declined to build a new factory and team that would solely focus on supplying Apple, said two of the sources.
The stalled discussions have meant that Apple has been considering Japanese battery makers and it sent a group of people to Japan this month, they added.