Commission approves €46.5 million Hungarian investment aid to Toray’s lithium-ion battery separator film plant
The European Commission has found Hungary’s €46.5 million investment aid to the chemical company Toray for a new battery separator film plant in the Közép-Dunántúl (Central Transdanubia) region to be in line with EU State aid rules. The aid will contribute to the region’s development whilst preserving competition.
The €46.5 million investment aid granted by Hungary will support Toray’s €397 million investment in a new production plant for lithium-ion battery separator films (“BSF”) in the Közép-Dunántúl (Central Transdanubia) region of Hungary. BSF are a key component of lithium-ion batteries, used in consumer electronics, energy storage systems and electric vehicles. They function as the separator of the two major building blocks of a battery, preventing short circuits while allowing the movements of ions.
The project, which started in 2019 and is planned to be completed in 2023, is expected to create nearly 200 direct jobs. The production plant is located in Közép-Dunántúl (Central Transdanubia), an area eligible for regional aid under Art. 107(3)(a) of the Treaty on the functioning of the European Union. It will be Toray’s first plant for the production of BSF in Europe.
The Commission assessed the aid measure under the Guidelines on Regional State Aid for 2014-2020, which enable Member States to support economic development and employment in the EU’s less developed regions and to foster regional cohesion in the Single Market.
The Commission found that:
- without the public funding, the project would not have been carried out in Hungary or any other EU country;
- the aid is limited to the minimum necessary to trigger the investment in Hungary;
- the investment aid will contribute to job creation as well as to the economic development and to the competitiveness of a disadvantaged region.
The Commission concluded that the positive effects of the project on regional development clearly outweigh any distortion of competition brought about by the State aid.