Bullish on Tesla’s future in China, Musk ends 3-day visit

Beijing,   Bullish on his Chinese dream, Tesla and SpaceX Founder Elon Musk on Thursday said he had excellent meetings with senior leaders and will aim to invest long-term in the country.

On a three-day visit to China where he signed a preliminary agreement with the Shanghai government to build a Tesla gigafactory in China, Musk on his last day of the visit said he is impressed with the Tesla China team.

“Excellent meetings with senior leaders in China. Very thoughtful about the long-term future,” Musk tweeted.

Dubbed “Gigafactory 3”, the Tesla facility in China is expected to produce 500,000 electric vehicles per year — doubling the production capacity of Tesla.

“Just finished an amazing 3 day visit to China. The world has never seen human energy & vigour at such scale. Incredibly impressed with Tesla China team & potential for the future,” Musk further tweeted.

According to Teslarati, a multi-platform company with a focus on everything that Musk has, vehicle production at “Gigafactory 3” would start two years after its construction begins.

“Such an aggressive timeline is classic Elon Musk, especially considering that components of Gigafactory 3, such as the advanced manufacturing robots and machinery that would be used to build the vehicles, would likely be coming from abroad,” the report said.

Musk had earlier said that China’s progress in advanced infrastructure is “more than 100 times faster than the US.”

However, things are not in very great shape at the moment for Tesla in the US.

Musk last month announced that Tesla will lay off 9 per cent of its workforce to show that it can be profitable after being unable to move into the black so far in the 15 years since it was founded.

The measure means that some 4,100 of the firm’s 46,000 employees will lose their jobs, although the layoffs will not affect operations at the factory producing the Model 3, Efe reported.

In May, Musk announced a significant reorganization of Tesla in the face of the economic difficulties it was facing and inability to turn a profit.

Tesla’s losses increased by 97.5 per cent to just under $785 million in the first quarter of 2018, despite the fact that earnings rose by 26.4 per cent to more than $3.4 billion.