Elon Musk visited China’s Ministry of Commerce and Industry

BEIJING, May 31 (Reuters) – Tesla Inc ( TSLA.O ) Chief Executive Officer Elon Musk spent his second day in China visiting the country’s Ministry of Commerce and Ministry of Industry.

Musk left his hotel Wednesday morning with Tesla’s China public affairs chief Grace Tao and global manufacturing chief Tom Zhu.

At the Ministry of Commerce, Minister Wang Wentao was sent off with a handshake. He next moved to the Ministry of Industry and Information, which oversees the regulation of the auto sector.

Tesla and the ministries did not immediately respond to a request for comment about discussions with Musk.

Musk’s first visit to China in three years comes as Tesla faces intense competition from Chinese-made electric vehicles and some uncertainty over expansion plans for its Shanghai plant.

The factory produced 700,000 Model Y and Model 3 vehicles last year, more than half of the company’s global production.

Another area of ‚Äč‚Äčinterest for investors is whether China regulators will crack down on Tesla’s rollout of advanced driver assistance features. As part of the “Full Self Driving” software, these features are sold in the US for a $15,000 vehicle.

A day earlier, Musk met Chinese Foreign Minister Qin Gang. A source and photos shared on social media said he had dinner with the head of CATL ( 300750.SZ ) and a key Tesla supplier on Tuesday evening.

CATL did not respond to requests for comment.

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Musk is expected to visit the Shanghai plant later in the week to meet with other senior Chinese officials, although it is unclear who he will meet or what issues he will discuss, the sources said.

Report by Martin Pollard; Additional reporting by Josh Arslan, Wang Dingshu and Joe Cash in Beijing and Zhang Yan in Shanghai; Written by Brenda Ko; Editing by Edwina Gibbs

Our Standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

Martin Pollard

Thomson Reuters

Martin Pollard is a Beijing-based China correspondent covering politics and public affairs. Since joining Reuters in 2017, he has reported on some of the region’s biggest stories, including the Sino-US trade war, the 2019 protests in Hong Kong, the Covid pandemic in China and the Tokyo 2020 and Beijing 2022 Olympic Games. Originally from South East England, Martin is a former TV reporter and video journalist with over a decade of experience in China and speaks fluent Mandarin.

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