How to rescue the automotive industry? With aeronautics and a group called “tourism and culture”, the sector has been identified by the Minister of Economy and Finance Bruno Le Maire as subject to specific assistance. ” Do not wait until the start of the school year to support this sector Says the Minister. A specific plan must be proposed in the coming days.

Towards a “green revival”

With a predictable collapse of 88% in new car sales for the month of April in France, the market is completely devastated. ” We now know that the crisis will be of great magnitude, with a drop in production in 2020 and, no doubt, in 2021, explains Bernard Jullien, economist specialist in the sector. In general, a loss of one point of GDP must be multiplied by four for the automobile. The hypothesis of a 10% drop in GDP would correspond to a drop in activity of between 30 and 40% for the sector

The state is expected at the turn by companies. Luc Chatel, president of the automotive platform (PFA), which represents the manufacturers and their very numerous subcontractors, warns that it is now necessary ” face the risk very worrying about a wave of failures’Companies ” The PFA calls for massive aid and ” urgent “, on a ” sufficiently broad spectrum to have a significant impact on the fabric of businesses in the sector ” Bruno Le Maire clearly said: ” there is no question of providing support for polluting vehicles, the recovery must be green

Special attention to Renault

Therefore, what contours should the public aid announced take? Steering requires skill. ” Until then excluded from premiums, fleet vehicles, if they are plug-in hybrids for example, could benefit from them … provided that they are properly recharged, for use We think of Bercy.

No contradictory signal should be given. Aid is needed, but it has to be electric, adds Marie Chéron, mobility manager at the Nicolas Hulot foundation. Similarly, if we imagine general states of mobility, it is necessary that the transition of the sector is honored, which goes through changing governance. To be more open, it must include, in addition to traditional players, those who develop shared cars, players in electric charging, etc. Finally, we will be attentive to the conditionalities of the aid granted to Renault which, after having taken the lead in the electrical sector, does not seem to be involved in the creation of a European battery sector

The diamond brand will benefit from five billion euros in loans guaranteed by the state. Its poor financial performance in 2019 makes it subject to the utmost vigilance of the Minister of Economy and Finance, who recalls that ” the race for volumes “Years gone by made its factories” overcapacity ” While keeping Renault in the “ decarbonation “, The State shareholder must ensure the restoration of its competitiveness and profitability. Group management is expected to announce a readjustment of its production equipment in the coming weeks.

Value chains in question

Bernard Jullien doubts the effectiveness of support confined solely to electrified vehicles. ” Even if we doubled their sales, we would leave thousands of businesses and employees out of the picture. Catalogs, production capacities are not structured in this way ” The economist also warns of the need to properly coordinate a stimulus package on demand, which could have the effect of increasing imports of small cars. The Clio and 208, very popular in France, are no longer assembled there. Hence the skepticism of the trade unions about support for demand.

Jean-Marie Robert, national secretary of the general federation of mines and metallurgy CFDT, would like a “label of French origin” applied to the automobile. ” Since we are investing heavily in the electrification of vehicles, we want most of these vehicles to be manufactured in France (at least 50%) to establish our volume of activity in France ” The internationalized automotive value chains are one of the equations to be solved in future aid, combining immediate and long-term measures.


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