New details about Panasonic’s Kansas battery plant for Tesla have emerged. Based on an announcement from Kansas Governor Laura Kelly, the Panasonic deal represents the largest economic development project in the state’s 161-year history.
According to an official announcement from the Kansas government, Panasonic would be building its battery plant at a site in De Soto. The project is estimated to result in an investment of up to $4 billion, and create up to 4,000 new jobs.
“The development will have ripple effects throughout the regional and state economy, supporting an estimated 4,000 additional jobs created by suppliers and community businesses and 16,500 construction jobs as cited in an independent Wichita State University economic impact study,” the Kansas government noted.
The competition to secure the Panasonic battery plant deal was intense, with Oklahoma also being shortlisted by the Japanese company. Oklahoma put up a strong fight, with lawmakers working out an incentive package to attract Panasonic. Despite this, Kansas’ own attractive incentive offers and its proximity to Tesla’s Gigafactory Texas reportedly sealed the deal.
Kansas Governor Laura Kelly issued a statement about her state winning the Panasonic deal. “As the largest private investment in Kansas history and one of the largest EV battery manufacturing plants of its kind in the country, this project will be transformative for our state’s economy, providing in total 8,000 high-quality jobs that will help more Kansans create better lives for themselves and their children.
“Winning this project shows that Kansas has what it takes to compete on a global scale — and that our pro-business climate is driving the technological innovation needed to achieve a more prosperous and sustainable future,” she said.
Panasonic’s Kansas battery plant is expected to produce 4680 cells for Tesla’s Gigafactory Texas facility. Giga Texas is pivotal to Tesla’s North American operations, and it is the site where some of the company’s most important vehicles like the Model Y, Cybertruck, and possibly the Tesla Semi, will be built.
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