On November 12, 2019, Tesla CEO Elon Musk announced that Tesla would build its Gigafactory 4 near Berlin, in the state of Brandenburg. Locating his plant in the heart of Europe was a strategically important and smart move. But, the ambitious schedule of Tesla caused doubts among people who know about the bureaucratic apparatus of Germany.
Nearly 2 years ago, Musk tweeted that Germany is the company's favorite when choosing a location for the future factory.
Germany is a leading choice for Europe. Perhaps on the German-French border makes sense, near the Benelux countries— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) June 19, 2018
From that moment, representatives of various federal states tried to interest Tesla. Brandenburg was no exception. Among all, this state had a number of advantages, including the location of the proposed site, which made it the main applicant:
- this place is only 30 minutes away from the capital of Germany, Berlin. There are a lot of talents in the capital, so such close proximity makes it possible that they will be interested in working at the Tesla factory;
- it was in this place that BMW had previously planned to build its plant and did a great environmental job, and many permits have already been received. This factor made this place one of the fastest places to start construction;
- near the site there is a wind farm and the plant intends to buy clean energy from it.
In addition to these factors, there were others. Welt am Sonntag released its report, which revealed some new details of the deal.
The report cited quotes from letters from state politicians to Musk. In addition to the above, Brandenbugr promised to provide funding from the state and from the European Union. It was also pointed out that there are low taxes on trade.
A January 2019 letter from Jörg Steinbach stated that, in particular, Lusatia “was taken into account not only through funding from the state of Brandenburg, but also by significant funds from the federal government and Europe across borders,” he continued “In addition, you will not find one other federal state in Germany with such low local trade taxes as Brandenburg.”
Dietmar Woidke writes in a letter from August 2019: “On a European scale, Brandenburg is one of the areas with the most interesting financing conditions.” The location also offers "favorable tax conditions."
Source: Emil Senkel
Woidke also adds that this place has “a favorable coverage area for both Brandenburg and the labor markets in Berlin and Western Poland.” The state can support the training of new Tesla employees in Brandenburg up to 10,000 euros per person.
Of course, proximity to workers in the west of neighboring Poland played an important role in locating the Tesla gigafactory in Brandenburg. This is evidenced by the fact that already in January, the automaker posted on its website a list of some vacancies, which, among other requirements, included knowledge of the Polish language. At that time, these positions mainly included recruiting staff. Poland is only 37 miles from Grünheide.
Tesla plans to provide 12,000 jobs. According to Teslamag, the unemployment rate in the Tesla area in the Oder Spree has recently been only 6.4 percent. This means that the local population will not be able to cover the need of the factory for workers. Of course, many local talented people are interested in working in Tesla, but Polish workers will certainly not be superfluous in the factory.
In addition, the letters, obviously, should also make it clear that the approval procedures will not be unnecessarily delaying the Tesla project. Woidke also wrote: “We will support you with all appropriate options to ensure that your temporary goals are achieved,” he continuous, “For all questions regarding the approval law required in connection with your planned investments (for example, environmental impact assessment, emission control approval procedure, forest conversion), I assure you of prompt and quick processing”
Construction of the plant is scheduled to begin in the first half of 2020, and completion is scheduled for July 2021. It is planned that annually from the assembly line of this factory should be produced 500,000 electric vehicles. Model Y and Model 3 will be produced here, which are so important for Tesla and with which the electric vehicle manufacturer wants to break into the mass market.
More info also available in Teslamag.de
Featured image: IMAGO / MARTIN MÜLLER
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.