China is consolidating its position as the biggest lithium batterymanufacturer in the world. The recent spate of battery recalls has prompted China lithium battery suppliers to expand their production capacity, widen application range and develop better-quality products.
To strengthen their competitiveness, China suppliers need to improve product quality to rival the products offered by international suppliers. More than ever, China suppliers have to pay particular attention to product safety, higher energy density, lower cost and long service life.
Product safety, in particular, is one of the most important R&D priorities of many makers. Suppliers are trying to adopt more stable electrolytes and add non flammable liquid as additive. They are also placing more emphasison material selection, structural design, protection PCB, production process control and safety verification.
Mobile phones have long been the major application segment for lithium batteries from China. Although the segment remains one of the biggest applications, suppliers are expanding their capacity for batteries used in laptops, electric tools and hybrid electric vehicles. China’s shipments of lithium batteries for laptops grew in the aftermath of the laptop battery recalls by Japan and South Korea suppliers.
Despite the optimistic outlook, China makers face a number of challenges that include rising raw material and labor costs, and declining profit margins due to the continued appreciation of the yuan and intense price competition. To cope with these challenges, many suppliers are investing in more cost-effective processes such as automation and quoting export prices with shorter validity terms to cushion the impact of currency fluctuations.
The following are some of the trends we see in China’s lithium battery industry:
• The majority of suppliers will maintain their current export prices in the coming months. Some suppliers have plans to raise their price quotes but any increase will be at a minimum.
• Exports are expected to continue on an upward trend with the US and Europe as the leading markets. Makers project their export sales to grow by 10 to 20 percent.
• China’s total production will continue to increase as the majority of suppliers plan to expand their capacity in the next six months in anticipation of growth in demand. This growth will be under pinned by the rising need for lithium batteries for use in laptops, digital cameras, power tools and electronic toys.
• Li-ion batteries will remain dominant but Li-polymer batteries are predicted to gain a larger share of the lithium battery market. Li-polymer batteries are increasingly being adopted in mobile phones, Bluetooth earphones and portable players.
The above is extracted from the Executive Summary of China Sourcing Report: Lithium Batteries & Packs
To learn more about this report, visit: http://www.chinasourcingreports.com/csr/lithium-batteries-packs
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