French Car Industry Fears a Quarter of Jobs in Sector
France risks losing up to a quarter of its jobs in the car industry due to the transition to electric driving. According to an interest group for the French car sector, this concerns 100,000 of the 400,000 jobs at companies such as Peugeot, Renault and Citroën, and dozens of suppliers.
According to Luc Chatel of La Plateforme Automobile, France is not competitive, and the government should help companies make the switch.
Chatel made his statements at an auto industry conference. He calculated that it is much cheaper to assemble a car in Spain or Eastern Europe than in France.
Renault CEO Luca de Meo endorses that analysis. Labour costs in France are 30 percent above the average in the European Union, and production costs are therefore one fifth higher than the European average, says the Italian. Renault, therefore, wants to stop producing cars in a factory just outside Paris in the coming years.
According to Chatel, around 17 billion euros will be needed to help the French car industry over the next five years. French President Emmanuel Macron is keen to show that he is trying to reverse the decline of French industry.
Earlier this month, he already allocated 30 billion euros for a plan that also included the goal of producing 2 million electric and hybrid cars in France.