The Brandenburg Social Democratic Party (SPD) in Germany wants to use 10 million euros ($11.29 million) to help spread the “Tesla effect” across the country.
Brandenburg SPD parliamentary group chairman Erik Stohn wants to use the funds for smaller projects that would help residents of the area. He referred to projects such as buses for the public, electric charging stations, or clinics where a doctor in Brandenburg can monitor the health of the local residents, German publication LR Online reported.
“We want to take the Turbo Tesla pace across the country,” said Stohn. The lawmaker alludes to the “Tesla Speed” seen when the carmaker built Giga Shanghai in China where it only took about 10 months to build the car factory and turn on its production lines on a muddy property, and took a few months more to deliver the first vehicles to local customers.
SPD also expects Giga Berlin to attract more investments into the region. This is consistent with Brandenburg Economics Minister Jorg Steinbach’s statement before that the Tesla car factory will open opportunities for Germany’s young workers.
Around a billion euros ($1.13 billion) is expected to be spent across the region for infrastructure and future technologies. The SPD, after a closed-door meeting on Thursday, revealed that about 40 million euros ($45.19 million) of projects will be initiated this year.
While Tesla has received support from the local and federal government to build Giga Berlin, it had to deal with some kinks along the way. The Brandenburg government allowed Tesla to prepare a portion of the 300-hectare industrial property for its Phase 1 construction but the clearing was temporarily halted when environmental groups, businesses, and local residents expressed their worries about the water supply in the area. The German court, later on, clarified the matter as the state government began infrastructure planning. This included spending 90 million euros ($101 million) next year for various projects around Giga Berlin.
During the height of the protests last month, Giga Berlin also won the heightened support of the Federal Economics Minister Peter Altmaier. “The construction of the Tesla automobile plant in Brandenburg has been of great importance for more climate protection and one of the most important industrial settlements in the new federal states for a long time,” Altmaier said.
In addition, there were calls for the speeding up of the approval procedures for industrial plants– which are often slowed down by long planning processes, objections, and protests — in the country. The Federal Association of German Industry (BDI) and the Institute of Germany Business (IW) warned that the delay of such big projects might scare away investors from doing business in Germany.
German publication Berliner Morgenpost also reported about calls to form a regional council for Brandenburg and Berlin to involve the people in deciding on how to develop the region.
Giga Berlin is expected to do the groundbreaking later this month and Tesla CEO Elon Musk has confirmed his presence. If all goes well, the first car factory of Tesla in Europe will begin production of the Model Y by July 2021.
The Gigafactory in Grunheide is expected to create 12,000 jobs and produce 10,000 vehicles per week.