Having a clean energy economy is something many of the top countries are looking into. One of the keys to having a clean energy economy is the production of high-tech batteries. These batteries power electric cars, store solar energy, and wind energy. Currently, China dominates lithium-ion battery cell battery production with over 135 factories. Compare this to the United States which only has 10. South Korea spent $21 million to build testing infrastructure for local producers of materials and parts for rechargeable batteries. This was a big commitment and shows that the rechargeable battery industry in South Korea will continue to grow in 2023. 

South Korea Aims to be an Alternative to China

rechargeable battery industry in South Korea

The worry for South Korea and other countries is that China will eventually hold a monopoly on lithium batteries. Therefore the auto industry will have to deal with China going forward. The test center that South Korea built will allow small and medium-sized businesses to run tests on the materials used to produce battery products. South Korea’s output in ICT (Information and Communication Technology) rose to $238 billion in 2022 on the back of chips, displays, and rechargeable batteries. 

Expect this number to increase even more as the Korean government looks to coordinate and finance an aggressive push in the coming years to boost their manufacturing of rechargeable batteries and their raw materials. The Rechargeable battery industry in Korea increased by 20% in 2022 to $25 billion. Of the $25 billion, $7 billion worth of production stayed in South Korea. 

South Korea will also look into the development of lithium-sulfur batteries for drones and aircraft and solid-state batteries which are safer and more energy-efficient for EVs. The aim is to have over $20 billion in battery exports by 2030.

LG Forming Partnerships in America

South Korea accounts for over 44% of the global rechargeable battery market. They are ahead of both Japan and China. South Korea mainly produces rechargeable batteries for IT devices and EVs.

“The global competition for rechargeable batteries has just begun in earnest as the U.S., Europe, and China are stepping up efforts to secure the manufacturing base, battery technology, and supply chains to target the rapidly growing market. The government has come up with a comprehensive battery policy to make concerted efforts with the private sector as the global battery race will face a critical juncture in the next five years,” said the Ministry of Trade, Industry, and Energy.

South Korea aims to be the main supplier of rechargeable batteries to the US market. The top producer of rechargeable batteries in Korea is LG Chem. LG Chem recently partnered with General Motors to build a battery-cell plant in Lordstown, Ohio which will create 1,100 jobs in America. In addition, LG Energy Solution Ltd the world’s second-largest EV battery maker got approval to build a $2.8 billion-dollar battery plant in Queen Creek, Arizona. The plant is expected to create over 2,800 new jobs. LG Energy Solution already has a battery plant in Michigan and it will spend an additional $1.7 billion to expand its yearly battery production capacity.

LG also partnered with GM for a $2.6 billion project to build a third EV battery plant in Michigan and has plans for a fourth. The aim of LG is to become the largest battery maker in all of North America.

The Rechargeable Battery Industry in South Korea – Top Producers 


battery industry in South Korea LG

LG Chem, Ltd. is Korea’s largest chemical and rechargeable battery maker in terms of both size and performance. The company’s chemical business is vertically integrated and manufactures a wide range of products, from petrochemical goods to high-value-added plastics. Furthermore, it also extends its chemical expertise into high-tech areas such as rechargeable batteries and the display materials field.

SK Innovation 

SK Innovation

Founded in 1962 as Korea’s first oil refiner, SK Innovation, formerly called SK Energy, is one of the world’s leading energy and petrochemical companies. In January 2011, SK Energy transformed into SK Innovation. SK Innovation has three subsidiaries of SK Energy, SK Global Chemical, and SK Lubricants. SK Innovation pursues emerging growth opportunities in Green and Renewable Energy. Therefore, SK Innovation is poised to be a technology-driven company with R&D capabilities beyond the core refining and petrochemical business. Moreover, SK Innovation aspires to be a leader in green energy solutions. They focus on lithium-ion batteries for electric vehicles, separators for lithium-ion batteries, and thin-film solar cells. 

Samsung SDI

Samsung SDISamsung SDI engages in the manufacture and sale of secondary cells, and plasma display panels, and is the largest supplier of lithium-ion batteries. The company was jointly established by the Samsung group back in 1970. In addition, it operates in two business segments: The display segment and the Energy segment. The Energy segment is engaged in the manufacture of batteries which account for roughly 50% of its sales. However, it supplies most of its products to Samsung group companies.