(Yicai Global) May 15 -- The recently established Shanghai unit of US electric vehicle firm Tesla Inc. has obtained a business license, marking a step forward in its efforts to set up a factory in the eastern economic hub.
Shanghai's Pudong New Area Market Supervision Bureau issued a business license to Tesla Shanghai Co. on May 10, it said on its website, adding that its business scope includes electric vehicles and parts, batteries, energy storage equipment and photovoltaic products, as well as import and export.
The Chinese government announced a series of initiatives to open up foreign investment in China in April including a policy allowing foreign new energy vehicle makers to set up wholly-owned factories. Overseas firms were restricted to a 49-percent stake previously. The rule change could lead Tesla to accelerate its strategy to set up shop in the country.
There were reports last June that Tesla had reached an agreement with the Shanghai government to establish a local factory in Lingang New City in Pudong district, though this was later denied by Lingang's developer.
China's vast NEV market represents a key opportunity for Tesla to solve its current financial difficulties. The firm recorded a net loss of USD785 million during the first quarter this year, more than double the amount of losses in the same period of last year and setting a record loss for the company.
Editor： William Clegg