Tesla appears one step closer to announcing a new factory in China. The company has taken steps in recent weeks suggesting the company will setup shop in Shanghai.
Specifically, Tesla China has setup a wholly-owned subsidiary in Shanghai with about $15.8 million in capital, according to Bloomberg. The move was taken by Tesla China’s existing operations, which are in Hong Kong. Setting up a subsidiary is generally seen as the first step to starting up a new factory in the country.
Tesla’s aspirations to build a factory in China has been well-known. CEO Elon Musk has been publicly lobbying China to allow wholly-owned foreign automakers to operate in the country, an ask the Chinese government recently granted.
China’s relaxing of foreign automaker ownership is undoubtedly fueling Tesla’s recent moves in Shanghai.
Of course, Tesla is not confirming anything just yet. During the company’s most recent earnings call Musk suggested a formal Chinese factory announcement could come as soon as the third quarter of this year. Musk has also eluded in the past that the company will produce the Model 3 and Model Y in China, while the more expensive Model S and Model X aren’t likely to see Chinese production.