Degussa, the world's leading supplier of specialty chemicals, said Wednesday it had agreed to set up a battery joint venture in China with Japanese firm ENAX. The 50-50 joint venture, to be called Degussa Enax (Anqui) Power Lion Technologies, will make electrodes for lithium-ion batteries and be headquartered in Anqui, in the northern Chinese province of Shandong, Degussa said in a statement. The global market for lithium-ion battery materials experienced double-digit growth in 2004 and currently stands at more than $1.2 billion (one billion euros), the German company said. The market is expected to increase to around $4 billion dollars by 2015, Degussa said. Chairman Utz-Hellmuth Felcht said: "The new joint venture underlines our determination to systematically expand our presence in the attractive markets of Asia. We want to generate around 25 percent of group sales in Asia over the long term."