What role are national governments and the European Commission playing in addressing the issue of sustainability about to European car production? The adoption of regulatory measures and tax incentives for the purchase of alternative motorization cars seem the most evident facts, but what role are governments like the French and German ones playing more precisely in supporting their respective car manufacturers? The acceleration on the issue of sustainable mobility and the production of electric cars, if on the one hand has been affected by the debate around the causes of the pandemic, on the other hand it constitutes at least for some European countries one of the main drivers of industrial development in the coming decades. The case of Germany is again quite emblematic in this regard, especially in relation to the involvement of different actors on the institutional and trade union level. In this context, what role, if any, will the governments of the Central Eastern European countries? These countries have seen car production grow more and more in recent years, partly to the detriment of the traditional Western European countries, but only partial the activity on R&S. It is evident that the support for investments in mobility also includes renewed support for investments in research and development both by the main car manufacturers and by suppliers. However, the renewal of the vehicle fleet will not be quick and risks undermining European car production, to the advantage of other national competitors (China in particular). Cost of the product and diffusion of charging infrastructures are problems that probably cannot be solved within one or two decades. In any case, as on other situations, the competitive advantage of some countries, both on an industrial and institutional level, risks polarizing this important manufacturing sector again with the inevitable deterioration of the production system of these countries which have lost significant positions in the last years (like Italy) or that have become manufacturing production areas without significant repercussions on the level of research and development (like Spain). Also, corporate mergers are destined further to concentrate the core of research activity in only 2-3 countries, thus further reconfiguring a renewed division of labor in the European automotive industry.
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