In December 2019, Tesla was granted a $1.4 billion loan from Chinese banks for Giga Shanghai. The five-year loan was partially used to roll over previous debts. The rest of the money would go towards Giga Shanghai and Tesla China’s operations. The interest rate was pegged at 90% of China’s one-year benchmark interest rate.
And now it seems that Tesla repaid the loan in full, thanks to documents that Twitter user “JPR007” has pulled up. He pointed to Tesla’s Q2 2021 balance sheet, which no longer shows the $1.4 billion loan or any portion of it — removing the line item altogether. This also means that any restrictions on Tesla associated with those loans have ended.
This $1.4 billion China Loan Agreement had been announced in late December 2019
– it was utilized and fully repaid within 16 months
– and it was repaid by the Shanghai business from internally generated funds even while construction and expansion of the factory continued https://t.co/UKJEr4dDsa
— JPR007 (@jpr007) October 4, 2021
In his thread, he shared that the China loan facility showed a balance of $614 million on March 31, 2021. On December 31, 2020, the balance was $616 million. Based on his findings, it looks like Tesla fully repaid the $1.4 billion loan that was announced in 2019 within 16 months.
“And it was repaid by the Shanghai business from internally generated funds even while construction and expansion of the factory continued.”
You can read JPR007’s full thread here. This wouldn’t be the first time Tesla paid its debts early. In 2010, Tesla received a loan from the U.S. Department of Energy. The amount was $465 million. It was paid off 9 years early. Even today, many still criticize Tesla for simply taking the loan while either not realizing or not acknowledging the fact that Tesla paid that loan back years ago whereas Ford seemingly never paid back its loan from the same program. CleanTechnica‘s Zach Shahan writes, “Ford has never repaid its loan. Nissan repaid its loan in 2017. Tesla repaid its loan in 2013, 9 years early. Fisker defaulted and went bankrupt.
“Ford’s loan was for $5.937 billion. Nissan’s was $1.448 billion. Tesla’s was $0.465 billion. Fisker’s was $0.529 billion. (Also, note that the US federal government spent $50.35 billion bailing out GM around that time, and $17.6 billion bailing out Fiat-Chrysler.”
Tesla’s history certainly shows us one thing: it’s good at paying back loans.