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Vietnam’s EV maker VinFast is on track to start production in the U.S. in 2024


The Vinfast VF6 all-electric vehicle is on display at the Los Angeles Auto Show 2022 on November 18, 2022 in Los Angeles, California.

Josh Lefkowitz | Getty Images News | beautiful pictures

Vietnamese electric vehicle maker VinFast told CNBC it is on track to start manufacturing in the US by 2024 even though the company is cutting the number of employees in North America.

Vietnam’s first domestic car manufacturer previously announced plans to go public in the US

Just this week, VinFast – the automotive branch of Vietnam’s largest corporation Vingroup – announced it will cut jobs in the US in a restructuring that would consolidate its operations across the United States and Canada.

“After observing last year, we see many similarities in the two markets and merging the two markets will allow us to be stronger and more agile,” said Ms. Le Thi Thu Thuy, Managing Director. VinFast, said in an interview with CNBC’s JP Ong on Friday. .

News of job cuts comes after a Reuters report on the 3rd of february VinFast will delay the delivery time for the first customers in the US

We still plan to start pilot production in 2024 as originally planned.

Le Thi Thu Thuy

CEOVinFast

Vinfast export the first batch of cars to the US in November, including 999 units of the VF 8. It had planned to deliver at the end of December but has since delayed shipments to February.

Le told CNBC on Friday that it has about 12,000 pre-orders in the US

International Expansion

The automaker has ramped up its U.S. expansion to take on American automakers like Tesla and announced it will establish a manufacturing plant in North Carolina to produce electric vehicles.

Le said the layoffs will not affect the expected time to start production at the first manufacturing plant in North America.

“We’re in the final stages of getting a building permit but the land has already been cleared. The state has also been working on the infrastructure for the site,” she told CNBC.

“We still plan to start trial production in 2024 as originally planned,” Le said. The plant’s annual production capacity is 150,000 electric vehicles, according to a company statement.

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The CEO said that the next markets that VinFast is expected to target will be Europe, namely Germany, France and the Netherlands.

However, VinFast cars are not currently eligible for the $7,500 tax credit in the US because they are not made domestically but are made in Vietnam. Selling price of VinFast VF 8 2023 model starting at $40,700.

“We immediately accelerated our plans for the North Carolina plant. Fortunately, we signed that agreement before the Inflation Reduction Act,” Le said.

Vietnamese electric car company discusses expansion plan to the US

“We don’t see it coming but we always [planned] to have a U.S. factory, so IRA increased our manufacturing capabilities in the United States to ensure that our customers will have access to affordable electric vehicles.”

“I believe in the long run [we are] will focus on producing electric vehicles as well as key components of electric vehicles in the US,” Le added.

VinFast’s IPO plan

Vinfast file an initial public offering in the United States on December 6. They did not disclose the quantity nor the price of the shares to be traded, according to its prospectus. It is also not known exactly when they plan to list.

“We have been monitoring the intensity of the market and I think this year the market has been a little better. We are ready but we need the market to cooperate more for us to do an IPO,” Mr. Le said. .

When asked about the expected date of the IPO, she said: “When we are ready to say more about it, we will be more than happy to share more.”

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