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The company plans to launch 15 all-electric or plug-in hybrid vehicles by 2025.

Ford has reaffirmed its belief that China is the primary driving force in the automotive industry's transition to electric vehicles.

China has retained the title of world's largest automotive market for nearly a decade, attracting global attention as the government aggressively pushes to secure a dominant role in vehicle development and production.

"When I think of where EVs are going, it's clearly the case that China will lead the world in EV development," Ford chairman Bill Ford said in Shanghai, as quoted by The New York Times.

The Blue Oval does not plan to be left out of the party, promising to launch at least 15 new Ford- and Lincoln-badged EVs and plug-in hybrids in the country by 2025.

Bill Ford's blunt assessment follows just weeks after the company formed a 50:50 joint venture with local automaker Zotye, a company better known in the West for its brazen knockoffs of the Smart Fortwo, Porsche Macan and Volkswagen Touareg. The new entity complements an existing tie-up, Changan Ford, that already operates three factories and will likely celebrate a million annual sales this year.