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Berlin's Senate Department of Economics has promised Tesla financial assistance if the company builds an R&D center in Berlin. However, parliamentary group Freie Demokratische Partei (FDP) leaders say the efforts to attract the manufacturer have been underperforming, which could cost Berlin thousands of jobs.
Tesla CEO Elon Musk announced back in 2019 that in addition to the factory, the company intends to build an R&D center in Berlin. Throughout 2020, he reiterated the original claim on multiple occasions and even said that a design team in Germany would be developing a unique car design for the European market. It has now become clear that Berlin's Senate Department of Economics even offered financial support for the project, although they were not persistent enough to interest the manufacturer, the FDP believe.
FDP has approached the Economic Administration of the Berlin Senate with the question of the Tesla R&D Center. In a document sent in response, the Economic Department wrote that Tesla could count on state funding if it did build an R&D center in the capital. According to the document, Tesla is already informed about this possibility and can decide exactly when to use it. “Tesla has been fully informed of this proposal,” Berlin's Senate Department of Economics said in a response received by Handelsblatt.
The FDP criticized the Senate's position, calling such an attitude as an "I don't care." While the state did its best for a Tesla settlement in Brandenburg, the Berlin Senate is feeling ashamed to actively advertise the city as a development hub, parliamentary group leader Sebastian Czaja told Handelsblatt. “This kind of indifference from the Senate could end up costing our city thousands of jobs,” he continued.
Any company that comes to the capital, including Tesla, can count on the support of the business development agency Berlin Partner for Business and Technology GmbH (BPWT) with an individual approach to business development and placement advice. "This includes questions about financial support, property and property searches, recruiting and hiring skilled workers, technology transfer, and more," Berlin's Senate Department of Economics explained.
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About the Author
Eva Fox joined Tesmanian in 2019 to cover breaking news as an automotive journalist. The main topics that she covers are clean energy and electric vehicles. As a journalist, Eva is specialized in Tesla and topics related to the work and development of the company.