China's new energy vehicle (NEV) production and sales continued to hit fresh highs in September in line with the country's aim of hitting peak carbon dioxide emissions before 2030 and achieving carbon neutrality before 2060.
The country produced 353,000 NEVs in September, up by 148.4pc from a year earlier and by 14.5pc compared with August. Sales rose by 148.4pc over the same period and by 11.4pc from August, to 357,000 units, the first time that both monthly output and sales have exceeded 350,000 units, according to data from the China Automotive Manufacturers Association (CAAM).
Total NEV output and sales during January-September reached 2.166mn and 2.157mn units, up by 184.5pc and 185.3pc on the year, respectively.
China is accelerating its transformation into a low-carbon emission society. Beijing has announced a development plan for the NEV industry for 2021-2035, targeting a 20pc share of NEVs in the country's total vehicle sales by 2025. Current rapid growth in the NEV market is expected to help it achieve this target in advance, within the next two years.
China's NEV sales currently account for 17.3pc of its total vehicle sales, with a 19.5pc proportion for new energy passenger vehicles, according to CAAM.
Robust demand from the NEV sector has bolstered lithium and cobalt feedstock prices. Argus yesterday assessed prices for 99.5pc grade carbonate and 56.5pc grade lithium hydroxide, essential materials in the production of lithium-ion batteries used in electric vehicles, at 180,000-190,000 yuan/t ($26,154-29,231/t) ex-works and Yn175,000-185,000/t ex-works respectively, the highest since Argus launched these assessments in 2016. Cobalt sulphate, another essential ingredient in battery production, was assessed at Yn86,000-89,000/t ex-works yesterday, having risen by 55pc since the start of 2021.