VANCOUVER, CANADA and FOSHAN, CHINA – Ballard Power Systems’ (NASDAQ: BLDP; TSX: BLDP) President and CEO, Randy MacEwen, this week had his third meeting with Mr. Hu Chunhua, Party Secretary of China’s Guangdong Province, while both are attending the “3rd Exposition for Investment and Trade of Advanced Equipment Manufacturing for the West Bank of the Pearl River Delta”, being held in the City of Foshan in Guangdong Province.
Mr. MacEwen participated in a private industry meeting during the exposition, at which Party Secretary Hu attended. This provided an opportunity to update Mr. Hu Chunhua on the status of Ballard’s joint venture fuel cell manufacturing facility currently being commissioned in the City of Yunfu in Guangdong Province. Mr. MacEwen also provided an update to Party Secretary Hu on the status of the fast-growing fuel cell industry in China.
Randy MacEwen, Ballard President and CEO noted, “Ballard is committed to providing continued leadership in the adoption of fuel cell technology in China. We are also committed to supporting Secretary Hu’s drive to improve air quality and deploy clean energy solutions in Guangdong Province, including making new energy vehicles with the world’s highest performing fuel cell technology and products.”
In August 2016 Party Secretary Hu visited the site of the manufacturing facility, which is operated by a joint venture with Guangdong Synergy Hydrogen Power Technology Co., Ltd., in which Ballard has a 10% ownership position. The joint venture is on-track to be operational later this year and has committed to a minimum “take or pay” contract with Ballard for $170 million over the initial 5-years, including $150 million worth of membrane electrode assemblies (MEA’s) that the joint venture will use in the manufacture of fuel cell stacks that will power buses, commercial vehicles and trains in China.
The joint venture production operation will be in a state-of-the-art facility – the only one in China – that will have capacity to produce 6,000 fuel cell stacks per year initially, ramping up to 20,000 fuel cell stacks annually.
Guangdong Province is experiencing tremendous economic growth and expansion. The “3rd Exposition for Investment and Trade of Advanced Equipment Manufacturing for the West Bank of the Pearl River Delta” is being hosted by Foshan and the Economic and Information Commission of Guangdong Province. In 2014 Guangdong put forward an initiative to construct an industrial belt for advanced equipment manufacturing on the west bank of the Pear River. In the past 3-years the eight cities involved in the initiative have experienced above-average growth rates and, at this year’s exhibition event, further deals are expected to be signed with an estimated value of 367 billion RMB (US$55B).
About Ballard Power Systems
Ballard Power Systems (NASDAQ: BLDP; TSX: BLDP) provides clean energy products that reduce customer costs and risks, and helps customers solve difficult technical and business challenges in their fuel cell programs. To learn more about Ballard, please visit www.ballard.com.