Europe as a location: “We talk new technologies to death” | EUROtoday

Get real time updates directly on you device, subscribe now.

european journal

As of: May 4, 2024 4:08 a.m

European firms are anxious that their location will lose contact with the worldwide market: main managers are calling on the EU to put a better deal with innovation and future applied sciences.

Matthias Ebert

When Uwe Lauber walks previous the outdated brick manufacturing facility buildings from the nineteenth century, at first look he doesn't appear to be a driver of climate-friendly applied sciences. The CEO of MAN-ES, the power division of the Volkswagen subsidiary MAN, nonetheless has diesel ship engines produced at its headquarters in Augsburg, which emit a variety of CO2 on the world's oceans.

But Lauber can also be a pioneer of a brand new inexperienced power supply: large-scale warmth pumps. “You won't find the size, dimensions and power density of our large heat pumps anywhere in the world. They could supply an entire city like Augsburg with energy,” he enthuses. But as a substitute of in Augsburg, Lauber is at the moment placing the world's largest warmth pump into operation in Esbjerg, Denmark.

The largest warmth pump on the planet is in Esbjerg, Denmark – though producer MAN-ES would like it to be in Germany.

The black cuboid system provides 100,000 individuals with climate-neutral warmth, in order that the outdated coal-fired energy plant subsequent door may be switched off. As a southern German, Uwe Lauber is indignant that future applied sciences are having a more durable time in Germany than elsewhere. “It annoys me that I have to take my technology abroad. We could also promote large-scale heat pumps in Germany, but this technology in the sense of decarbonization is not yet established in many people's minds.”

In addition to massive warmth pumps, Lauber additionally develops electrolyzers for inexperienced hydrogen and reactors for methanol synthesis. He complains that paperwork and complex multi-stage approval procedures are slowing down utility in all areas on this nation. “Germany has no idea how to quickly approve new technologies. Our own processes prevent us from doing so. In Germany I have the feeling that we talk new technologies to death first instead of saying: Give it a chance.”

Five authoritative ones Future industries

Lauber requires extra pragmatism and willpower within the implementation of climate-friendly improvements. It can also be in regards to the query of what position Europe's financial system performs within the digital and ecological change. Former central financial institution chief Mario Draghi lately referred to as for an extra 500 billion euros per 12 months to shut “investment gaps” in Europe. Draghi desires to current an in depth report for a extra aggressive EU on behalf of the EU Commission in the summertime.

One of essentially the most aggressive firms in Europe is ASML from Veldhoven, Netherlands. The group produces essentially the most highly effective machines for chip manufacturing. Companies similar to Intel, TSMC and Nvidia rely on this prime European know-how. The key to success was that ASML invested billions in analysis and improvement at an early stage.

ASML CFO Roger Dassem sees main deficits in future applied sciences in Europe.

From the angle of CFO Roger Dassen, ASML is likely one of the exceptions in Europe, which is more and more shedding contact with world competitors: “I don't see that Europe is sufficiently promoting the five key industries: semiconductor industry, biotechnology, automotive industry, battery technology and green energy sources.”

Dassen sees too many nationwide solo efforts in these vital industries as a substitute of a united European method with a type of New Industrial Act with a purpose to stay a worldwide know-how chief. “If this systematic support does not happen, Europe will no longer be able to compete with the United States and Asia. That would be a shame.”

Act shortly to catch up

The Imec Institute in Leuven, Belgium – considered one of Europe's main high-tech analysis establishments – additionally believes that the following EU Commission should act shortly and decisively. Imec chief strategist Jo De Boeck sees Europe's analysis in a number one place. But there may be considerably much less danger capital for implementation right here than within the USA or China: “We have to ensure that Europe integrates the capital market more closely and that new players are added that better support the growth of start-ups,” he calls for.

One instance is synthetic intelligence. Europe can take the lead within the improvement of secure, comprehensible and accountable AI if there’s a decided deal with it. However, in terms of enterprise capital alone, there are tax benefits within the USA in comparison with Europe, which is why many European start-ups relocate to the USA.

But it's not simply the USA – China is now additionally forward within the business, as European consultants admit with concern. The Middle Kingdom is threatening to “undermine” Europe's industrial base, believes former ECB boss Draghi. MAN-ES board member Uwe Lauber merely believes the Chinese are smarter, whereas Germany usually acts fearfully and inhibited.

His subsequent massive warmth pump shall be virtually thrice as huge because the one in Esbjerg – and shall be in Aalborg, Denmark. Lauber's want to construct a large-scale warmth pump in Germany is not going to be fulfilled within the foreseeable future: “In Germany, approval for large-scale systems takes up to five years,” he complains.

The Europamagazin report “Europe 2040 – superpower or relegated?” see you on Sunday, May fifth. at 12:35 within the first.