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Ford To Build $3.5B Electric Vehicle Battery Plant In Michigan

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DETROIT, MI — Ford Motor Company wants to build a factory in Michigan that will cost $3.5 billion and employ at least 2,500 people. This factory will make cheaper batteries for electric cars, both new and old.

The plant, which would be built on industrial development land about 100 miles (160 kilometers) west of Detroit, would begin producing batteries in 2026. According to Ford, it would produce 35 gigatonnes of batteries per year, enough to power 400,000 vehicles.

The factory near Marshall would produce lithium-iron-phosphate batteries, which are less expensive than the current nickel-cobalt-manganese chemistry used in many EV batteries.

Customers could then choose between a battery with a lower range and a lower cost and a battery with a higher range and power. Prices have yet to be determined by the company.

“The goal here is to make EVs more affordable and accessible to customers,” said Marin Gjaja, Ford’s electric vehicle chief marketing officer.

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Ford Will Contact Out Some Of The Work And Machinery To Chinese companies.

According to Ford, the factory would be owned and operated by a wholly owned subsidiary. However, Contemporary Amperex Technology Co. Limited, or CATL, a Chinese company known for its lithium-iron-phosphate expertise, would provide technology, some equipment, and workers.

The announcement comes at a time when relations between the United States and China are strained, and the Biden administration is offering tax breaks to businesses that establish a U.S. supply chain for electric vehicle batteries. To qualify for the full $7,500 per vehicle tax credit, EV batteries cannot contain metals or components from China.

Ford hopes that the structure of the plant will keep people from saying bad things about spending state tax incentives on a joint-venture factory that a Chinese company will partly own. Virginia dropped out of the race for the same Ford plant last month after Gov. Glenn Youngkin described it as a “front” for the Chinese Communist Party that would raise national security concerns. At the time, Virginia had not offered Ford any incentives.

Because the vehicles are manufactured in North America, the company expects to take advantage of U.S. factory tax credits, with buyers initially receiving at least $3,750 in tax credits. Gjaja stated that depending on the source of battery minerals, they could receive the full $7,500 credit over time.

Lithium-iron-phosphate batteries would be used in standard-range Ford EVs. For example, the cheapest Mustang Mach-E electric SUV would have an LFP battery and be able to travel 247 miles per charge. The long-range Mach-E will have a nickel-cobalt-manganese chemistry that will allow it to travel 310 miles per charge.

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The New Plant Was Unveiled At A Fund Meeting

The plant was unveiled Monday at a Michigan Strategic Fund meeting, which approved a large tax incentive package for the project near Interstates 94 and 69.

Ford’s director of economic development, Gabby Bruno, stated that “there is no lack of competition for this project.” She said that Michigan “competed against numerous states and countries” to secure the investment.

The Ford plant received approximately $210 million from Michigan’s Strategic Outreach and Attraction Reserve Fund, or SOAR, which was established to attract industry and jobs to the state. However, the total value of the incentive package was not disclosed.

Since its inception in December 2021, the SOAR Fund has received nearly $1.8 billion from the state’s general fund.

A tax-relief bill passed by the Michigan House last week could send up to $1.5 billion to the SOAR Fund over three fiscal years, in addition to the $800 million one-time deposit outlined by Gov. Gretchen Whitmer in her budget proposal last week.

Republicans have heavily criticized the tax-relief bill, which still needs to be approved by the state Senate, where Democrats hold a two-seat majority, for giving too little to taxpayers and too much to large corporations.

SOURCE – (AP)

 

Kiara Grace is a staff writer at VORNews, a reputable online publication. Her writing focuses on technology trends, particularly in the realm of consumer electronics and software. With a keen eye for detail and a knack for breaking down complex topics, Kiara delivers insightful analyses that resonate with tech enthusiasts and casual readers alike. Her articles strike a balance between in-depth coverage and accessibility, making them a go-to resource for anyone seeking to stay informed about the latest innovations shaping our digital world.

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The House Votes For Possible TikTok Ban In The US, But Don’t Expect The App To Go Away Anytime Soon

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Why Buying TikTok Views is the Best Way to Maximize Followers
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Washington — The House passed legislation Saturday that would prohibit TikTok from operating in the United States if the popular social media platform’s Chinese owner does not sell its stake within a year, but the app is unlikely to disappear anytime soon.

The decision by House Republicans to include TikTok as part of a bigger foreign aid package, a priority for President Joe Biden with broad congressional backing for Ukraine and Israel, accelerated the prohibition after an earlier version had been blocked by the Senate. A standalone bill with a shorter, six-month selling period cleared the House in March with an overwhelming bipartisan majority, as both Democrats and Republicans expressed national security worries about the app’s owner, Chinese technology firm ByteDance Ltd.

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The House Votes For Possible TikTok Ban In The US, But Don’t Expect The App To Go Away Anytime Soon

The updated bill, which passed by a vote of 360-58, now goes to the Senate following discussions that extended the company’s selling timeframe to nine months, with an extra three months conceivable if a sale is in the works.

Legal disputes may extend that period even further. If the law passes, the corporation has stated that it will likely file a lawsuit to block it, claiming that it will deprive the app’s millions of users of their First Amendment rights.

TikTok has fought aggressively against the proposal, encouraging the app’s 170 million U.S. users, many of whom are young, to contact Congress and express their objections. However, the intensity of the backlash enraged politicians on Capitol Hill, where there is widespread worry about Chinese threats to the US and few members use the platform themselves.

“We will not stop fighting and advocating for you,” TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew said in a video released on the platform last month, addressing the app’s users. “We will continue to do all we can, including exercising our legal rights, to protect this amazing platform that we have built with you.”

The bill’s rapid passage through Congress is remarkable because it only affects one firm and Congress has adopted a hands-off approach to technology regulation for decades. Lawmakers had failed to act despite efforts to protect children online, preserve users’ privacy, and hold firms more accountable for content put on their platforms, among other things. However, the TikTok ban reflects broad fears among lawmakers about China.

Members of both parties, as well as intelligence officials, have expressed concern that Chinese authorities may force ByteDance to pass over American user data or direct the business to suppress or promote TikTok content that benefits its interests. TikTok has disputed claims that it is being utilized as a tool by the Chinese government and has stated that it has not shared user data from the United States with Chinese authorities.

The US government has not publicly shown evidence that TikTok exchanged US user data with the Chinese government or tampered with the company’s popular algorithm, which impacts what Americans see.

The corporation has good reason to believe that a legal challenge will be successful, as it has already won court battles over its operations in the United States. In November, a federal judge halted a Montana law that would have prohibited TikTok use throughout the state after the business and five TikTok content providers sued.

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The House Votes For Possible TikTok Ban In The US, But Don’t Expect The App To Go Away Anytime Soon

In 2020, federal courts blocked then-President Donald Trump’s executive order to ban TikTok after the firm sued, claiming that the order violated its free speech and due process rights. His administration arranged a deal in which US businesses Oracle and Walmart would have acquired a significant share in TikTok. The transaction fell through for a variety of reasons, including China’s tougher export curbs on technology companies.

Dozens of states and the federal government have imposed TikTok restrictions on official equipment. The Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University filed a lawsuit last year, claiming that Texas’ restriction violated academic freedom because it applied to public universities. In December, a federal judge decided in favor of the state.

The software has received support from organizations including the American Civil Liberties Union. “Congress cannot take away the rights of over 170 million Americans who use TikTok to express themselves, engage in political advocacy, and access information from around the world,” Jenna Leventoff, a lawyer for the group, stated

According to AdImpact, an advertising tracking service, TikTok has spent $5 million on television ads opposing the law since mid-March. The advertisements have featured a variety of content creators, including a nun, touting the platform’s benefits in their life and claiming that a prohibition would violate the First Amendment. The corporation has also urged its customers to contact Congress, with some lawmakers receiving profanity-laced calls.

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The House Votes For Possible TikTok Ban In The US, But Don’t Expect The App To Go Away Anytime Soon

“It is unfortunate that the House of Representatives is using the cover of important foreign and humanitarian assistance to once again jam through a ban bill that would trample the free speech rights of 170 million Americans, devastate 7 million businesses, and shutter a platform that contributes $24 billion to the U.S. economy, annually,” Alex Haurek, a spokesperson for the organization, said.

California Democratic Rep. Ro Khanna voted against the bill. He believes there could have been less restrictive ways to pursue the corporation that would not end in a blanket ban or jeopardize free speech.

“I don’t think it will be well received,” Khanna remarked. “It’s a sign of the Beltway being out of touch with where voters are.”

Nadya Okamoto, a TikTok content creator with approximately 4 million followers, stated that she has been speaking with other creators who are expressing “so much anger and anxiety” about the bill and how it will affect their life. The 26-year-old, whose company “August” offers menstrual goods and is recognized for her activism for de-stigmatizing monthly cycles, earns the majority of her money via TikTok.

“This is going to have real repercussions,” she told me.

SOURCE – (AP)

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Apple Pulls WhatsApp And Threads From App Store On Beijing’s Orders

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HONG KONG — Apple said it has deleted Meta’s WhatsApp messaging service and Threads social media program from the service Store in China in accordance with Chinese authorities’ requests.

Chinese officials withdrew the apps from the store on Friday, citing unspecified national security concerns.

Their departure coincides with heightened tensions between the United States and China over trade, technology, and national security.

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Apple Pulls WhatsApp And Threads From App Store On Beijing’s Orders

The United States has threatened to ban TikTok due to national security concerns. However, while TikTok, owned by Chinese technology giant ByteDance, is popular in the United States, apps such as WhatsApp and Threads are not widely utilized in China.

Instead, the texting program WeChat, owned by the Chinese giant Tencent, dominates.

Other Meta apps, like as Facebook, Instagram, and Messenger, remained available for download, however usage of such international apps is prohibited in China due to the country’s “Great Firewall” network of filters, which restricts access to foreign websites like Facebook and Google.

“The Cyberspace Administration of China ordered the removal of these apps from the China storefront based on their national security concerns,” the company stated in a statement.

“We are obligated to follow the laws in the countries where we operate, even when we disagree,” the company added.

Meta didn’t immediately respond.

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Apple Pulls WhatsApp And Threads From App Store On Beijing’s Orders

Apple, previously the world’s leading smartphone manufacturer, has lost that position to Korean rival Samsung Electronics. The US company has faced headwinds in China, one of its top three markets, with sales falling after Chinese government agencies and state-owned company employees were told not to bring Apple devices to work.

Apple has been expanding its production sites beyond China.

Its CEO, Tim Cook, has been visiting Southeast Asia this week, visiting Hanoi and Jakarta before concluding his trip in Singapore. On Friday, he met with Singapore’s deputy prime minister, Lawrence Wong, and “discussed the partnership between Singapore and Apple, as well as Apple’s continued commitment to doing business in Singapore.”

Apple has vowed to invest more than $250 million to develop its campus in the city-state.

Cook visited with Vietnamese Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh earlier this week in Hanoi, promising to spend more money on Vietnamese suppliers.

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Apple Pulls WhatsApp And Threads From App Store On Beijing’s Orders

He also met with Indonesia’s President Joko Widodo. Cook later told reporters that they discussed Widodo’s intention to increase manufacturing in Indonesia, and that Apple will “look at” it.

SOURCE – (AP)

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Tesla wants shareholders to reinstate $56 billion pay package for Musk rejected by Delaware judge

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Tesla wants shareholders to reinstate $56 billion pay package for Musk rejected by Delaware judge
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AUSTIN, Texas – Tesla will ask shareholders to approve the reinstatement of a $56 billion compensation package for CEO Elon Musk, which a Delaware judge rejected earlier this year, and move the electric car manufacturer’s headquarters from Delaware to Texas.

In a statement with federal regulators early Wednesday, the business stated that shareholders will vote on both measures at its annual meeting on June 13.

Tesla wants shareholders to reinstate $56 billion pay package for Musk rejected by Delaware judge

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Tesla wants shareholders to reinstate $56 billion pay package for Musk rejected by Delaware judge

The Tesla board of directors offered Musk an unprecedented compensation plan that could be worth $55.8 billion over ten years starting in 2018, but Chancellor Kathaleen St. Jude McCormick ruled in January that Musk is not eligible for it.

Five years ago, a Tesla shareholder lawsuit argued that the pay package should be void because Musk dictated it and forged agreements with directors who weren’t impartial to him.

Musk announced a month after the judge’s decision that he would try to relocate Tesla’s corporate listing to Texas, where he has already relocated the company’s headquarters.

Almost immediately after the judge’s order, Musk moved Neuralink, his privately held brain implant company, from Delaware to Nevada.

Tesla met all of the operational and stock value benchmarks outlined in a 2018 CEO pay package, according to Chairperson Robyn Denholm in a letter to shareholders this week. She also stated that Musk has met the automaker’s growth expectations.

“Because the Delaware Court second-guessed your decision, Elon has not been paid for any of his work for Tesla for the past six years, which has helped to generate significant growth and stockholder value,” Denholm said. “That strikes us — and the many stockholders from whom we already have heard — as fundamentally unfair, and inconsistent with the will of the stockholders who voted for it.”

According to a regulatory filing, Tesla delivered 1.8 million electric vehicles worldwide in 2023. However, the value of its shares has dropped sharply this year as sales of electric vehicles fall.

Tesla wants shareholders to reinstate $56 billion pay package for Musk rejected by Delaware judge

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Tesla wants shareholders to reinstate $56 billion pay package for Musk rejected by Delaware judge

Future growth is still being determined, and it may be difficult to persuade shareholders to support a large pay package in a market where competition has increased globally, and demand for electric vehicle sales is declining. Shareholders will also be asked to submit a nonbinding advisory vote on future CEO pay.

Tesla’s stock has lost over one-third of its worth this year as dramatic price cuts have yet to attract new purchasers. The business said it shipped 386,810 automobiles from January to March, about 9% fewer than last year.

Musk’s package was valued at more than $55.8 billion at the time of the Delaware court verdict, but the court may have cost the erratic CEO more than $10 billion due to the company’s stock decline this year. According to the report, Musk’s 2018 remuneration totaled $44.9 billion at the close of trading on April 12.

Since last year, Tesla has reduced prices by up to $20,000 on some models. The price decreases caused the prices of used electric vehicles to fall, reducing Tesla’s profit margins.

Tesla announced this week that it would lay off nearly 10% of its workforce, or approximately 14,000 individuals.

Following receipt of a report from a special committee under the direction of one board member, Kathleen Wilson-Thompson, Tesla’s board stated in the filing that it sought shareholder approval of Musk’s 2018 compensation package.

Tesla wants shareholders to reinstate $56 billion pay package for Musk rejected by Delaware judge

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Tesla wants shareholders to reinstate $56 billion pay package for Musk rejected by Delaware judge

The board stated that if a significant vote is cast against future executive pay packages, “we will consider our stockholders’ concerns, and the compensation committee will evaluate whether any actions are necessary to address those concerns.”

Tesla Inc. shares, which fell another 8% this week, were marginally down in trade shortly after Wednesday’s opening bell.

SOURCE – (AP)

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