National Electric Vehicle Sweden (Nevs), the China-backed firm that bought Saab’s assets out of bankruptcy in 2012, has signed a framework agreement to take a 50% stake in Chinese vehicle manufacturing company New Long Ma (NLM). The company has a factory with production capacity of 150,000 vehicles per year in the Fujian province.

Nevs is retaining some of Saab’s manufacturing capacity in Sweden, but with the closing of some big deals to supply electric vehicles to China lately, it was inevitable for the company to look into manufacturing in the region.

Last year, we reported on the company closing a massive 78-billion-yuan ($12 billion) deal to supply 150,000 electric cars to Chinese leasing firm Panda New Energy and last month we learned that Nevs signed a framework deal worth about 8.5 billion crowns ($1 billion) with China Volant Industry Co. (Volinco) for 20,000 electric cars.

The company is expected to produce and paint the bodies of the cars at an old Saab factory in Sweden, and then assemble them in China.

Interestingly, NLM’s product portfolio includes an electric commercial distribution minivan which is a part of the agreement with Nevs. The company said that it sold over 12 000 units during its first year of production in 2015.

Nevs Chairman Kai Johan Jiang said:

“This deal broadens our product portfolio with an additional vehicle type which contribute to our vision of sustainable transport solutions. The deal is of significant strategic importance to implement our business plan and this will speed up our time to market.“

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