Musk, China’s BYD deny report on Tesla ending battery supply cooperation

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SHANGHAI (Reuters) – Tesla Inc Chief Executive Elon Musk and Chinese electric vehicle and battery maker BYD Co Ltd on Tuesday denied a media report that said the U.S. company was ending cooperation with BYD on battery supplies.

The Korean Economic Daily on Sunday cited industry sources as saying Tesla had not asked BYD for an additional supply of batteries for certain Tesla Model 3 vehicles after their supply deal expired earlier this year.

“That media report is false. Relations between Tesla and BYD are positive,” Musk said in a tweet on Tuesday.

In a statement to Reuters, BYD said that the report “is not in line with the actual situation.”

BYD Executive Vice President Lian Yubo in June told Chinese state-owned broadcaster CGTN that BYD was preparing to supply Tesla with batteries “very soon”. Neither company have publicly disclosed any deal since.

(This story has been refiled to correct a verb tense in paragraph 2)

(Reporting by Zhang Yan and Brenda Goh in Shanghai and Mrinmay Dey in Bengaluru; Editing by Christopher Cushing)