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Utopia Talk / Politics / Germany welcomes Tesla, thanks to Brexit
Daemon
Member
Thu Nov 14 02:38:35
http://www...-uk-as-elon-musk-blames-brexit

13 Nov, 2019

Tesla Gigafactory Europe to be built in Germany, not UK, as Elon Musk blames Brexit uncertainty

Brand's European battery plant will be built near Berlin, with Tesla R&D centre in Germany, too

Tesla boss and serial entrepreneur Elon Musk has revealed that the firm's new European Gigafactory battery facility will be built in Germany on the outskirts of Berlin.

Speaking at Auto Express’s sister title Auto Bild’s Golden Steering Wheel Awards, Musk also revealed that a European research and development base was also planned for Germany, in addition to the new battery manufacturing plant.

However, speaking exclusively to Auto Express after making the announcement, Musk blamed Brexit uncertainty on why the UK wasn’t considered for the new site: “Brexit [uncertainty] made it too risky to put a Gigafactory in the UK,” Musk said.

Brexit might have something to do with Musk’s change of heart over the R&D centre, too. Back in 2014, he told Auto Express that he planned to build an R&D base in the UK. Those plans have since been shelved.

Musk used his appearance at The Golden Steering Wheel Awards, where he was collecting an Award for the Tesla Model 3 – the current Auto Express Car of the Year – to make his announcements. “We’ve decided to put the Tesla Gigafactory Europe in the Berlin area,” he said. “I come to Berlin a lot – Berlin rocks!”



“Some of the best cars in the world are made in Germany, everyone knows that German engineering is outstanding,” said Musk. “That’s part of the reason why we’re locating our Gigafactory Europe in Germany.

“We are also going to create an engineering and design centre in Berlin.”

The Gigafactory Europe will be Tesla’s fourth battery plant. The first is in Reno Nevada, with a second gigafactory due in Buffalo, New York. The third is nearing completion near Shanghai in China. The European plant is set to be sited near Berlin’s upcoming new airport on the outskirts of the city.
Paramount
Member
Thu Nov 14 05:19:10
But what about Britain? What do they get? Isn’t brexit supposed to be good?
Rugian
Member
Thu Nov 14 07:48:21
Brexit *uncertainty* is indeed a disrupting force in the UK economy. If you want to thank somebody for this, try Hillary Benn and the Tory Remoaner traitors.
jergul
large member
Thu Nov 14 08:04:52
Ruggy
Brexit uncertainty will remain until the UK finalizes permanent trade agreements with its main trading partners.
Rugian
Member
Thu Nov 14 08:18:43
Jergul,

And that process cant begin until the PM either gets Parliament to approve a deal or (ideally) crashes the UK out without one.
jergul
large member
Thu Nov 14 08:24:42
Ruggy
Crashing out without a deal will give a very unfavourable trade negotiation position for the UK.

Rugian
Member
Thu Nov 14 09:21:46
Jerggy,

America spent its first several years of independence without trade deals with most of Europe as well. It's a survivable phenomenon.
hood
Member
Thu Nov 14 09:26:16
You're comparing apples to hand grenades.
Rugian
Member
Thu Nov 14 09:29:00
Hood,

Fair enough. America never had to deal with a bunch of continental assholes who made the prospect of trade contingent on full regulatory alignment.
jergul
large member
Thu Nov 14 09:31:22
Ruggy
"Brexit - its a survivable phenomenon"

I must have missed that slogan on the Brexit bus.

Surely you can see that a good negotiation position is better than a bad negotiation position?

Rugian
Member
Thu Nov 14 09:43:34
Jerggy,

And I must have missed the part where being a rule-taker gives you a better negotiating position.
jergul
large member
Thu Nov 14 09:57:37
A deal gives the UK time to finish negotiations with other main trading partners (the US and China mainly) from a position of relative strength (the EU negotiations are not rushed due to lack of barriers during negotiations).

A no deal forces the the UK to cut any trade deal it can get to keep its export industries from imploding.
Rugian
Member
Thu Nov 14 10:14:58
I wasn't aware that any trade deal was needed to trade.

But anyway, I think you're overestimating the desperate nature of the UK's situation. This is a Tier I First World country of 68 million that has strong ties with the world's sole superpower. It will be able to make fair deals.
jergul
large member
Thu Nov 14 10:20:25
Ruggy
Congress has been pretty clear on not doing the deal thing for a while. But perhaps it will be able to make a fair deal with China.
Rugian
Member
Thu Nov 14 10:28:16
Jerggy,

The UK being in or out of EU customs doesnt help or hurt it in dealing with Congressional dysfunction.
jergul
large member
Thu Nov 14 10:34:19
It gives the UK time to negotiate deals from a position of relative strength.
Rugian
Member
Thu Nov 14 10:42:19
Incorrect.
jergul
large member
Thu Nov 14 10:45:26
Correct for reasons given.
Seb
Member
Thu Nov 14 11:04:57
Rugian:

Jergul is correct.

Firstly, it's not uncertainty about withdrawal agreement that's the issue, it's uncertainty about the future relationship that matters here. And the dispute over the final relationship is why neither deal has passed.

Gigafactory supply chain isn't fully present in UK, nor market. Under a Canada dry agreement or no deal, that's not viable and EU have said they won't allow a deeper FTA than bare minimum without UK adherence to UK standards to avoid regulatory dumping.

So if we remained, left under May's deal, or left under Corbyns proposed deal, gigafactory in UK would be viable.

It's only under no deal or Borises deal that gigafactory becomes unviable. So it's better to say really that if Borises deal goes through, then Elon certainly wouldn't build the gigafactory for Europe in the UK.

The reason we are uncertain about the end state is because Boris and co scuppered Mays deal because they want the hardest posible brexit, and said they wanted no deal instead of May's deal.




Nimatzo
iChihuaha
Thu Nov 14 13:32:00
There is so much wrong in comparing an 18th century agricultural economy with a 21th century service based economy. And lol@survivable! A car crash that paralyzes and leaves you with third degree burns all over your body is also survivable. I always disliked that saying "what doesn't kill you only makes you stronger". Not true, sometimes it makes you paralyzed.
Rugian
Member
Thu Nov 14 18:06:09
nim,

And sometimes, what doesn't kill you indeed makes you stronger. Lots of things that can be hurtful in the short run are still well worth it. Hell, fighting Hitler in WWII was worth it (although that's probably a bad example in your case).

Sure, the American economy was radically different in the 18th century compared to today, but it still had a large import/export market. Well, at least it did until after the revolution, when the UK, France, and Spain all closed their New World possessions to American merchants to fuck with us. American exports in 1790 are believed to have fallen by more than 24% compared to 1770.

As an aside, Americans' per-capita income is estimated to have declined by anywhere from 20% to 40% during that same period. I doubt even the most ardent Remoners would suggest that the UK is facing that level of economic desolation from Brexit.

Still, American independence was worth it. As British independence will be in time.
Rugian
Member
Thu Nov 14 18:16:18
Seb,

Uncertainty over Brexit is derived from the fact that a significant minority in your country can't seem to move on from the outcome of 2016 (we have some experience with that ourselves in the States).

Once the anti-Brexiters are finally defeated for good, the UK is of course going to seek a trade agreement with the EU. It would be insane not to. The question is of details and timing, not if.

Though I concede that such a deal would be made harder if the EU sticks to its opening negotiating position of requiring regulatory alignment for anything of substance. Which is absolutely nuts. Full alignment is not and should not be a requirement to engage in trade. A fact which the EU itself has acknowledged with previous deals made with other countries.

But of course, we know why the UK is held to a different standard. Once a person is admitted into paradise, he is expected to stay there forever, not to decide that he's better off leaving. It'd be a terrible precedent for the EU to set if it allowed the UK the dignity of acting like a sovereign and equal partner.

So really, it's the EU's hardline fuckery that's to blame here if anything.

You really can't get out of that bureaucratic nightmare quickly enough.
jergul
large member
Thu Nov 14 18:48:25
Ruggy
Surely you mean English independence? There is no particular reason to expect Scotland to remain part of the UK if a hard brexit comes to pass.

Rugian
Member
Thu Nov 14 19:04:20
Jerggy

I can think of 55 reasons they'd remain - because that's the percentage that voted as much in the 2014 "once in a generation" referendum (and we of course accept that result as well).
Seb
Member
Fri Nov 15 00:27:29
The literal reason we didn't leave the EU last year was because Boris Johnson voted against May specifically so he could become PM.

Rugian, what planet are you on?
Seb
Member
Fri Nov 15 00:35:45
The EU has been utterly clear on regulatory alignment.

They are not going to agree to an FTA for goods with a country the size of the UK of they think we are going to build a low wage regulation free manufacturing hub based on achieving competitive advantages from unsafe practices and pollution 20 minutes from the EU border and force them into a race to the bottom.

It's not going to happen. Ever. Andy obviously so.

They can handle countries an ocean away doing it, because the trade flows and level of integration are lower, but not the UK.

There was a time when some kind of mutual recognition of standards might have been agreed, but that requires trust.

Would you trust the UK led by a man that hasv publically disavowed and now explicitly broken binding UK legal commitments?

No.

So they want everything written into law now.

The entire shitstorm we are in with the EU is almost entirely down to the behaviour and particular idiocies of the Brexiteers; particularly Boris Johnson, who doesn't even particularly care about brexit from a policy perspective (repeatedly getting the details of his own policy wrong), but just wants the issue as a means to garner support for his political ambitions.


Seb
Member
Fri Nov 15 01:29:41
Also even if we agreed a bare bones FTA: that would still not be enough for gigafactory.

The EU countries have a single market. That means no customs, no standards checks, no controlled goods checks (e.g. on hazchems), etc. etc.

Nothing.

The single market was a policy developed and delivered by Thatcher's govt as a piece of neoliberal economics. The idea being that by removing all friction, everyone in the single market could focus their efforts on areas of competitive advantage, thus everyone gets richer.

Trade 101. Adam fucking Smith. It's not hard.

Cororally 1: this means we don't have three full industrial base in the UK anymore, so gigafactory would not be able to set up here without components and inputs repeatedly crossing the border and being subject to standards checks, customs declarations etc. Even if the delays and costs of this could be overcome economically and we ignore the fact it would obviously be more profitable to base in the EU, the resulting gigafactory products would not be sufficiently UK sourced to meet rules of origin requirements under WTO or most other trade deals and would not be eligible for tariff reductions under any FTA the UK might arrange.


Cororally 2:

reintroduction of such frictions will mean it becomes more efficient to build locally some things - this will make us poorer, not richer, as productive effort will go into areas that are lower value add than previously.


Not only has Boris made it harder to get an FTA, the FTA he is aiming for - simple tariff reduction, is certainly something that would prevent gigafactory from operating.

Finally, Boris is aiming for an FTA with the US, so again, from a stabdards point of view, the EU worries about your low cost diseased meat being imported to the UK, turned into ready meals and processed food products and then shipped into the EU. Again, detailed standards checks would be needed and price competition based on standards reduction isn't something the EU is interested in.

Then there is state aid rules: as mentioned the effective narrowing of the UK industrial base to a few areas of competitive advantage based on specialism means the UK will likely need to do something to try and rebuild supply chains in order to try and preserve high value activities like car manufacture and get the domestically produced component levels high enough that they qualify as UK goods under rules of origin for FTA purposes. This will likely break the state aid rules in the EU which are far stricter than those governing international trade (otherwise national govts could subsidise domestic industry kicking off beggar thy neighbor policies leading to break up of the single market). Boris wants to ditch these rules, but the EU won't want to allow this as it will greatly anger the businesses in the EU that previously exported to the UK to feed that manufacturing that are now losing out to UK subsidised suppliers. And other EU manufacturers would be pissed that the EU would be allowing UK e.g. cars with subsidised supply chains to be brought into the EU market to compete against them. "Why," they would say "Are you letting the UK subsidise competitors to our suppliers to manufacturer cars and then bring them into the EU to compete against our products? If the UK can't or doesn't have the capacity to produce cars fully domestically without state subsidy, then we shouldn't bend the rules for them: let us expand to meet demand and we will generate growth in the EU both from our car sales and ensure these component suppliers don't go bust as they can feed our increased demand".

The problem you and you Brexiteers have is you simply don't want to understand any of the real detail here. You just shout slogans and waffle about sovereignty.

The problem is the EU member states as sovereign too, and that means they can and will tell the UK to fuck off on trade issues if it's more advantageous for them to do so. This is how all trade negotiations ever have been conducted if not at the barrel of a gun.

There's no *right* to free trade.

Nimatzo
iChihuaha
Fri Nov 15 03:09:06
>>And sometimes, what doesn't kill you indeed makes you stronger.<<

It is poetic thing to say to Soldier through inevitably hardship, but reality will offer you at the very least an equal number of ways where you are simply just shooting yourself in the foot or head. You don't bring disaster upon yourself. To get stronger is not a random process, it is slow, methodical and incremental process. Evolutionary improvements of the kind you seem to favor implies alot of death.

>>Sure, the American economy was radically different in the 18th century compared to today, but it still had a large import/export market<<

It also had a lot of "free" real estate, was importing "labor" and relying heavily on an open borders immigration policy ironically. For many other obvious reasons seperated by 3 centuries, this is a very bad comparison.

>>Still, American independence was worth it.<<

Post facto.

>>As British independence will be in time.<<

An assumption, centering around a definition of "independence" that has no relationship to previous mentioned American independence.
jergul
large member
Fri Nov 15 06:14:14
Ruggy
As would we have to abide by the next Scottish referendum in say 2022.

But yay English independence!
Seb
Member
Fri Nov 15 07:46:33
Rugian:

Re Scottish independence, it's a given of we leave.

The 2014 referendum was won in part on the basis that if it left, it would be out of the EU and we'd use that to extract concessions.

There's no way Westminster will be able to resist political pressure for a referendum for long. At some point SNP block will determine which party forms a govt and that will be their demand. And the longer you try to refuse the demand, the more that proves the case for independence.

You have the same issue with NI which exacerbates things too. The UK by law cannot refuse a ballot in NI, so it can hardly turn around to Scotland and say "well, we conceded it in the case of NI as a reward for the IRAs violence" - indeed our argument has always been that NIs place in the Union arises from formal consent and that is why the IRA were fundamentally illigitimate.

So we'd be trying to argue that while NIs place in the Union it's based from and requires consent, the Scottish Union doesn't.

It would be unacceptable to most English people frankly. A second indy ref is very likely inevitable now. The only question is on which terms it can be won. And I think that can only be if a UK govt remains in the EU and offers some kind of formal federalism that achieves the main objectives of Scottish independence. It's where devolution has been heading anyway.

The Tories and folks like you have literally taken us to the brink of destroying the country.





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