"It is foreseeable that we will create tens of thousands of jobs in this area in Germany," said Altmaier in RTL / ntv "Early start". On Tuesday, he visited the Varta company in Ellwangen to be the first German company to hand over a funding decision from the European Battery Project (IPCEI).
Varta gets 300 million euros. The minister described the company as an "outstanding example" from the industry. "That's why they're getting this check now." Altmaier underlined the ambitions of the battery initiative. Europe does not have to compete with Asia in terms of quantity, but should develop the best, most powerful and most environmentally friendly batteries. “We can become a leader there and we want that too.” There is a “completely new dynamic” with the topics of electromobility and battery cell production. Imports of lithium to Germany rose “enormously”. The economic stimulus program has brought out additional money for battery technology. "This makes it possible for us to strengthen the momentum in such a way that it can become an independent and self-confident new industry," said Altmaier. The CDU politician assumes that the EU Commission will also approve the second consortium for battery production. It will only be possible to judge in a few months whether there will even be a third. “We want it to go ahead. We don't want to exclude anyone. And we want it to be a market economy. That is the yardstick and everything else will be seen. ”
Altmaier advocated further European cooperation in other economic sectors. A hydrogen initiative will be launched. He wanted something similar in mobile communications with 5G technology. “We believe that we need more European companies that are involved in the expansion worldwide.”
Companies such as Ericsson and Nokia are examining whether it is possible to involve German companies more. Start-up financing is conceivable. "For me, it is always crucial: if it is a future technology, it is a technology that creates new jobs that move Germany forward and then subsidies are justified."