In today’s top stories, Elon Musk has visited China and met with the country’s foreign minister, pushing the Tesla share price up more than 4%. Elsewhere, TotalEnergies and start-up Tree Energy Solutions have announced plans to build a $2bn synthetic natural gas plant in the US rather than the EU — the TotalEnergies share price was down 2.5% following the news. Chinese electronics manufacturer Xiaomi is partnering with Dixon Technologies to build smartphones in India, while consumer goods giant Unilever has said it is leaning more on suppliers in Africa to counter foreign exchange volatility.
TotalEnergies snubs EU for $2bn plant
French energy giant TotalEnergies [TTE.PA] and Belgian start-up Tree Energy Solutions have announced plans to build a $2bn synthetic natural gas plant in the US, in what could come as a blow to the EU. “The US has the best renewable potential when it comes to solar and wind, it has great ease of doing business, and it has available CO2, available pipes and liquefaction capacity,” Tree Energy Solutions CEO Marco Alverà told the Financial Times. TotalEnergies shares were down 2.5% following the news.
ASM eyes AI demand
Dutch chip equipment maker ASM [ASM.AS] expects artificial intelligence (AI) demand to offset any impact US curbs on China may be having on orders. In an interview with Bloomberg, CEO Benjamin Loh said that “ChatGPT or generative AI needs eight times the memory of a normal Google search”, and that chips of all shapes and sizes will be needed to meet the demand. Shares in ASM had hit a 52-week high on 30 May.
Xiaomi partners with Indian assembler
Chinese electronics manufacturer Xiaomi is partnering with Dixon Technologies [DIXON.NS] to build smartphones in India, according to Bloomberg. The deal can be viewed as a big win for India, which is keen to rival China’s tech dominance and is pushing companies to relocate manufacturing there. Xiaomi has previously been a smartphone market leader in India, but a regulatory crackdown on Chinese firms has weakened its dominance.
Unilever relies on African suppliers
Consumer goods giant Unilever [ULVR.L] is leaning more on suppliers in Africa to counter foreign exchange volatility, reported Reuters. “Over 95% of the brands we sell to our (African) consumers are made in African factories,” Reginaldo Ecclissato, Unilever’s chief business operations and supply chain officer, told the news agency. Until recently, only a third of the ingredients that go into its products were sourced from the continent, but that total is now over two-thirds, said Unilever.
Tesla shares accelerate on Musk’s China trip
Elon Musk has visited China for the first time in three years, and has met with the country’s foreign minister, triggering the Tesla [TSLA] share price to rise more than 4% on Tuesday. Wedbush analyst Dan Ives tweeted that the trip “is a big deal”, and in a client note mentioned the “Shanghai Gigafactory plant which remains the hearts [sic] and lungs of the Tesla production globally”. Ives reiterated an ‘outperform’ rating.
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