The government is ready to support the investment plan of French Group PSA if the company decides to make a new model in Trnava, PM Peter Pellegrini stated during a visit in the car factory in the city. According to Pellegrini, there is possibility for the government to provide direct financial support for the purchase of technologies, possibly in combination with tax reliefs. The PM underlined that it was crucial that some electric vehicles are produced in Slovakia and that car manufacturers do not transfer production to their home countries, adding that reducing production in Trnava would have a major impact on employment and economic production in other parts of the country. Pellegrini also recalled that the government is preparing a package of measures in response to the moderation of economic growth, where the automotive industry will have a strong say, as this segment employs more than 250,000 people.
In this context, Groupe PSA Slovakia CEO Stephane Bonnhomeau said that he could not say anything more about the future model for Trnava’s plant, because there is an internal competition within the PSA Group to assess their competitiveness. He added that one of the criteria is that labor costs are not increased. However, he indicated that by 2025 the entire product portfolio of the car manufacturer will also be produced in the electric version. Bonnhomeau informed that the Trnava plant plans to produce a record-high 380,000 vehicles this year (up from the earlier announced plan for 370,000 cars), adding that the plant did not expect Brexit to have an impact on its production. The plant produced 352,082 vehicles in 2018, thus reporting production expansion for the seventh consecutive year. The Group’s total investment in Slovakia has exceeded EUR1bn. Including suppliers, Groupe PSA creates almost 20,000 jobs in Slovakia, whereas 4,500 directly.