Mercedes boss agrees to invest 100 mln euros in e-battery factory at meeting with PM
German car company Mercedes-Benz Cars will produce electric batteries in Poland.
The news, announced during member of the company’s divisional board Markus Schäfer’s visit to Warsaw on 22 January, highlights the opportunities for Poland amid the move towards e-cars in Europe.
Amid concerns about emissions, more car producers are looking to electric cars – not least in Germany, where cities are cracking down on polluting diesel vehicles. With plans to produce hybrid and electric cars on a mass scale, Stuttgart-based Daimler, which owns Mercedes-Benz Cars, intends to buy more than 20 billion worth of battery cells by 2030.
From Poland’s perspective, a growing interest in electric cars in Europe is viewed as a broad opportunity for the country’s automotive industry, which accounts for a sizeable part of its economy. For auto parts producers, it will require a gradual move from conventional parts towards ones specific to electric vehicles.
It also fits the policy of the Polish government, which is banking on electric cars as a way of stimulating innovation while reducing air pollution. An “Electromobility Development Programme” adopted in 2017 is one of the flagship projects of the government’s Strategy for Responsible Development.
In Warsaw, Schäfer met with Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki, who welcomed the new investment.
“We are witnessing the 4.0 industrial revolution in which Poland plays a leading role,” said Morawiecki.
“The decision to start production of electric batteries shows that companies that have begun investment activity believe in the talents of employees, suppliers, contractors and good cooperation with government institutions, too,” he added.
The batteries will be produced in Jawor, south-western Poland, where Daimler is already building a plant to produce car engines.
Production is expected to begin in mid-2020, reaching around 100,000 batteries a year. The investment, worth around 100 million euros, is expected to create some 200 jobs, according to the Chancellery of the Prime Minister.