Volkswagen is the largest manufacturer in the world and seeks to maintain this position. With a little effort from the officials, Romania did not miss the opportunity to get rid of 1 billion euros.
Volkswagen seeks to maintain its position as the world’s largest manufacturer and, from this point of view, invests heavily. For some years, he has been looking through this part of Europe for a new investment: more precisely, an npu factory for the next generation of Passat and Skoda Superb models. Even Romania was taken into account.
It just wasn’t meant to be.
So the Germans turned to Slovakia, where they plan to invest no less than 1 billion euros in the plant they decided to open there.
How Romania missed 1 billion euros as an investment from Volkswagen
The president of the German group, the Slovak subsidiary, Oliver Gruenberg, says that the German group’s investment will be made in projects targeting the full range of models produced at the plant in Slovakia and will lead to the creation of 2,000 jobs in the coming years. It is a chance that Romania lost.
“Total investment in Bratislava is expected to amount to one billion euros. It is an investment in the entire range of models from Volkswagen Slovakia “, said Oliver Gruenberg, at a press conference.
The plan does not provide for an increase in total production capacity at the plant in Slovakia, which last year manufactured 377,750 cars. This factory, from whose gates especially top models, such as the Audi Q7 and Porsche Cayenne, export more than 99% of its production. The car industry, made up of Volkswagen and three other car manufacturers, is the backbone of Slovakia’s manufacturing sector and accounts for most of the country’s exports.
Slovakia produces twice as many cars as Italy, with a population ten times smaller. Czech carmaker Skoda, a division of the Volkswagen Group, also announced on Friday that production of the premium Superb will be transferred from the Czech Republic to Slovakia. The Skoda Superb and Volkswagn Passat models share the same platform and many components.
The builder bypassed Romania
As I said, Romania was also on the short list of countries considered for this investment. The Germans had initially chosen Turkey, but were forced to reconsider their plans. The producer backed down after Turkey’s offensive in Syria and escalating tensions with the Kurds. Volkswagen said at the time that it was following developments there and coming up with a final decision.
It was, in fact, a refusal ever since.
Before the official announcement, our authorities were a little agitated and insisted that they will do everything possible to attract the world’s largest producer in our country. Gheorghe Falcă, the mayor of Arad at that time, said that the western area is the most suitable.
“I led the negotiations at the level of my level, I had government assistance, and the location of Arad was accepted after this negotiation. Then, the Romanian government submitted the complete offer that contains answers to four important problems raised by the company. The mayor’s office provided an area of 1,100 hectares, of which 400 hectares for the Volkswagen plant, and the rest – for the component companies “, said Gheorghe Falcă.
Despite what was officially stated, Romania missed the chance. There was not much effort from the government level and then came the pandemic. The focus was elsewhere.