NewsBYD's European leap: French courtship amid expansion plans

BYD's European leap: French courtship amid expansion plans

Xi Jinping visited France and its president, Emmanuel Macron.
Xi Jinping visited France and its president, Emmanuel Macron.
Images source: © PAP | PAP/EPA/Sarah Meyssonnier / POOL
4:51 PM EDT, May 8, 2024

BYD, the largest car manufacturer in China and one of the most popular brands globally in unit sales is establishing its first European factory in Hungary. However, the French government has extended a warm invitation to the company, signaling potential expansion opportunities within Europe.

During a visit on May 6-7, Chinese leader Xi Jinping was hosted by Emmanuel Macron in France. Discussions primarily focused on the Ukraine conflict, Chinese investments, and Franco-Chinese trade relations.

Following his visit to France, Jinping's itinerary included stops in Serbia and Hungary, further highlighting the importance of his European tour. A key theme throughout his trip, especially in France, was the automotive industry, as reported by Reuters.
In Hungary, BYD plans to operationalize its inaugural European factory by 2026. Yet, the firm's European ambitions might not stop there. According to Reuters, Bruno Le Maire, the French Finance Minister, has expressed a keen interest in having a BYD manufacturing plant by the Seine, assuring a warm welcome for the Chinese conglomerate.

Chinese car manufacturers are avidly seeking to establish European production bases sooner rather than later. This urgency is partly due to an ongoing European Union investigation into the subsidies provided by the Chinese government for electric vehicle production. These subsidies are believed to skew the competition landscape, potentially leading to significantly higher tariffs on vehicles produced in China.

Related content