EU Industry Commissioner vows to help Europe’s car sector image

EU Industry Commissioner Antonio Tajani today promised to take action to help Europe’s suffering carmakers.

Tajani said he will address the automotive sector’s problems and restructuring in “an urgent and co-ordinated way”. The commissioner said he will gather industry leaders, representatives of the workers and top politicians to address issues such as overcapacity, investing in new technologies, and state aid.

Tajani said the announced plan is the first result of the European Commission’s strategy for a new industrial revolution and has the aim to ensure the EU auto industry „moved even further ahead in safety and environmental performance”.

However, critics said the strategy lacks substance, as it is unclear how much the European Union’s institutions can do to help innovations in the auto sector. Although the industry commissioner can coordinate long-term EU strategies, individual member states have to deal with plant closures in their own countries.

The European Commission’s action plan also includes investing in skills and training through the European Social Fund, as well as measures to promote a greener car fleet, in order to cut emissions and fuel use.

The plan doesn’t mention targets beyond the draft policy announced so far to reduce CO2 emissions from new cars sold in Europe to 95 grams per kilometer.