BMW ramps up investment in China to meet electric demand

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang, right , meets with Harald Kruger, CEO and chairman of the Board of Management of BMW AG, left back, at the Zhongnanhai lea

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang, right , meets with Harald Kruger, CEO and chairman of the Board of Management of BMW AG, left back, at the Zhongnanhai lea

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — German automaker BMW says it is taking a majority stake in its China joint venture and investing 3 billion euros ($3.5 billion) in production there as it prepares to meet increased demand for electric vehicles.

Munich-based BMW said Thursday it would pay 3.6 billion euros ($4.2 billion) to raise its stake in BMW Brilliance Automotive Ltd. to 75 percent from 50 percent.

The deal is subject to approval by regulatory authorities and shareholders of Chinese partner Brilliance China Automotive Holdings Ltd.

BMW AG also said it would invest 3 billion euros in new and existing plant facilities in Shenyang, increasing production capacity to 650,000 vehicles a year from the early 2020s. A new plant will be able to produce fully electric, partly electric, and conventional vehicles on the same line.