Wallonia may invest in Chinese electric-car project in Gosselies
Wednesday, 30 May 2018
The financial arm of Wallonia’s Government, Sogepa, could invest 150 million dollars in a project by the Chinese manufacturer Thunder Power to build electric cars at the Caterpillar site in Gosselies, L‘Echo newspaper reported on Wednesday. The newspaper said that, based on information from the Taiwanese economic newspaper, Digitimes, a framework agreement was reportedly signed during a visit by Sogepa leaders to China. When contacted by L’Echo, Sogepa declined to comment on the discussions because of their confidentiality.
However, the newspaper quoted many sources close to the matter as saying that Sogepa had been asked to contribute 150 million dollars, but that nothing had been finalized. The remainder of the investment would be funded by the Chinese, according to the sources, one of whom was quoted as saying that no binding financing agreement had yet been signed.
Thunder Power could install its European research and development centre and a production site for its electric cars at Caterpillar’s Gosselies site.
Wallonia’s Minister of Economic Affairs, Pierre-Yves Jeholet, had recently confirmed that a Chinese company specialized in building electric vehicles was interested in the site.