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New Tesla factory near Berlin to create ‘up to 10,000 jobs’

A new Tesla auto factory is to be built near Berlin, Elon Musk announced. What does it all mean?

New Tesla factory near Berlin to create 'up to 10,000 jobs'
Elon Musk at Germany's Golden Steering Wheel awards on Tuesday in Berlin. Photo: DPA

What's happening?

On Tuesday evening, technology entrepreneur, investor, and engineer Musk revealed during a ceremony at Germany's Golden Steering Wheel awards that the new “Gigafactory” for electric cars and batteries would be “in the Berlin area.”

The 48-year-old said the electric car maker planned the facility “near the new airport” in Berlin-Brandenburg.

“Everyone knows that German engineering is outstanding and that's part of the reason we are locating our Gigafactory Europe in Germany,” he said at the awards run by Bild am Sonntag and Auto Bild.

“We will definitely have to put in a higher pace than the airport,” Musk added, referring to the notorious delays of the building of Berlin's BER airport.

He said the firm planned to set up a design hub in the capital.

“We are also going to create an engineering and design centre in Berlin because I think Berlin has some of the best art in the world,” Musk said.

The news highlights a further global expansion for the firm, which last month said its factory in China had started production.

Musk offered few details, but reports have said the company hopes to begin European production by 2021. “Giga Berlin,” Musk tweeted, bookending the words with heart emojis.

“Will build batteries, powertrains & vehicles, starting with Model Y,” he added in another tweet.

Tesla is estimated to have some 30 percent of the European market for battery-powered cars.

READ ALSO: New Tesla factory to be built near Berlin

How many jobs will be created?

According to Bild, up to 10,000 jobs will be created. However, other estimates have been slightly less. The Berlin government on Wednesday said the factory would create up to 7,000 positions.

The new factory is to be built on an industrial site in Grünheide, Brandenburg, in the Oder-Spree district southeast of Berlin, according to Berlin daily Tagesspiegel.

A BMW plant had already been considered for this site. But now a direct competitor to BMW's popular 3-series is likely to emerge there – with German technology. Three years ago, Tesla bought the German machine manufacturer Grohmann, which specializes in production lines.

Other federal states – including Saarland and Lower Saxony – were also initially in discussion as possible sites for the new Tesla factory.

In fact, very few people had considered the Berlin-Brandenburg area, according to Spiegel.

Elon Musk in Berlin on Tuesday. Photo: DPA

Is this important for Germany?

Yes. Musk's announcement is good news for the German auto industry, according to professor Ferdinand Dudenhöffer of the Center for Automotive Research at the University of Duisburg-Essen.

Tesla producing electric cars in Germany could wave a checkered flag at the local competition, such as Volkswagen, BMW, and Daimler, speeding up innovation in the sector there, Dudenhöffer said.

However, Dudenhöfer also urged people to be cautious when talking about job creation estimates. He said: “Cell production is highly automated. Energy costs are far more important than labour costs.”

Tesla is already looking for employees for the factory in Germany on its vacancies page.

According to “Manager Magazin”, Elon Musk had already confirmed at the presentation of the Tesla figures for the third quarter of 2019 that his company wanted to build a factory in Europe. At that time it was only stated that the location would be announced before the end of the year.

The factory in Germany is expected to go into operation at the end of 2021.

What are politicians saying?

The news has been welcomed, especially in the eastern German state of Brandenburg which surrounds Berlin. State premier Dietmar Woidke told DPA: “This is excellent news for our state. We have worked hard to achieve this during intense talks and with good arguments. I am happy that Elon Musk has chosen Brandenburg as the location.

“The Giga factory will give Brandenburg a further boost as an innovative and international location and will give many people a good job.”

Berlin's Economics Senator Ramona Pop of the Greens said: “Those who have visions come to Berlin. Welcome to the metropolitan region, Tesla!”

What else do we know about Tesla?

Tesla, which has set the pace for electric mobility since it was founded by Musk in 2003, last month announced that it posted a profit in the recently ended quarter instead of taking a loss as analysts expected.

Tesla said it is producing vehicles “on a trial basis” at its recently opened “Gigafactory” in Shanghai, which will help boost global production and sales.

Musk was optimistic that the Shanghai factory could begin cranking out Model Y vehicles by the middle of next year, and believed the new model has the potential to be a huge seller.

The company has been dogged by concerns it may not be able to ramp up production to meet demand and that Musk may have overstated Tesla's goals for sales and technology improvements.

Musk expected the Shanghai factory to hit “volume production” in a few months, and that it could be possible to significantly ramp up Tesla production. He noted that a battery plant was also being built on the Chinese site.

Tesla's first “Gigafactory” was constructed in the US state of Nevada, and its vehicles are built mostly at a factory in Northern California.

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WORKING IN GERMANY

EXPLAINED: The 25 most in-demand jobs in Germany

For those considering relocating to Germany - or looking for a new profession - here are the most in-demand jobs out there, according to a study by LinkedIn.

EXPLAINED: The 25 most in-demand jobs in Germany

Germany is desperate to fill jobs. In autumn last year, authorities said there was a shortage of 390,000 skilled workers. 

The new government plans to ease red tape and overhaul immigration policies to make it easer for non-EU nationals to come to the country. 

READ ALSO: What Germany’s coalition proposals mean for citizenship and immigration

But many people already within Germany might also be thinking about a change of career, or pivoting to a related sector, especially after the Covid pandemic changed the world of work. 

For those who are curious, international job search engine LinkedIn has published a list of jobs that are in-demand in Germany. Although lots of positions in Germany require that you speak German, many companies are international and encourage English speakers to apply.

What is the list?

The so-called LinkedIn Jobs in Trend 2022 list shows the 25 occupations that have grown the most over the past five years compared to other other positions. 

The list “allows insight into how the job market is evolving and the long-term opportunities it presents – whether you’re looking to change careers, re-enter the workforce or upskill for future challenges,” said LinkedIn. 

It’s based on LinkedIn data between January 2017 and July 2021. 

READ ALSO: How to boost your career chances in Germany

Here is the list of the top 25 positions, including the core skills required for each and the desired amount of experience for candidates according to LinkedIn.

In some of the descriptions below we haven’t translated the job name  to German – that’s because it is usually advertised in Germany with the English name.

1. Consultant for the public sector (Berater*in für den öffentlichen Sektor)

Responsibilities: Advising public and government institutions on the modernisation and digitalisation of administration and infrastructure

Most common skills: Public Policy, Management Consulting, Policy Field Analysis

Top regions hiring in: Berlin, Hamburg and Munich areas

Average years of experience: 2.8 

2. Product analyst (Produktanalyst*in)

Responsibilities: Product analysts use metrics to evaluate a company’s products to determine whether they meet current and future market needs

Most common skills: Tableau, Google BigQuery, SQL

Top regions hiring in: Berlin, Hamburg and Munich areas

Average years of experience: 3.7 

A man at his home office desk.

A man works at his ‘home office’ desk. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Sina Schuldt

3. Business development specialist or consultant (Beschäftigte in der Geschäftsentwicklung)

Responsibilities: Business development employees develop companies, enter new markets and evaluate sales opportunities

Most common skills: salesforce, account management, inside sales

Top regions hiring in: Berlin Munich and Frankfurt areas

Average years of experience: 3.3

4. Sustainability manager (Nachhaltigkeitsmanager*in)

Responsibilities: Sustainability management employees are based in corporate social responsibility (CSR) departments and look after the social, environmental and economic aspects of a company

Most common skills: Sustainability reporting, corporate social responsibility, life cycle assessment management

Top regions hiring in: Munich, Berlin and Hamburg areas

Average years of experience: 3.8

5. Cyber Security Specialist (Cyber Security Spezialist*in)

Responsibilities: Unlike IT security, cyber security is not limited to the environment of your own company, but also keeps an eye on wider threats from the internet in order to ward off viruses, Trojans or ransomware

Most common skills: ISO 27001, Security Information and Event Management (SIEM), vulnerability assessment

Top regions hiring in: Munich, Frankfurt and Cologne-Bonn areas

Average years of experience: 7.1

6. Developer for machine learning (Entwickler*in für maschinelles Lernen)

Responsibilities: Machine learning developers create so-called artificial intelligence. They research and design models and algorithms that enable machines to recognise patterns in large volumes of data, among other things

Most common skills: TensorFlow, Python (programming language), Keras 

Top regions hiring in: Berlin, Munich and Cologne-Bonn areas

Average years of experience: 3.3 

READ ALSO: Working in Germany – 7 factors that can affect how much you’re paid

7. User Experience (UX) Researcher

Responsibilities: User experience researchers find out what users need and want and prepare these findings for developers, marketers, designers and others

Most common skills: Usability testing, design thinking, human-computer interaction

Top regions hiring in: Berlin, Munich and Cologne-Bonn areas

Average years of experience: 4.6

8. Real estate finance specialist (Spezialist*in für Immobilienfinanzierung)

Responsibilities: Real estate finance specialists accompany and advise clients from the initial property enquiries stage to closing the deal and agreeing on financial arrangements

Most common skills: Construction financing, finance, sales

Top regions hiring in: Munich, Frankfurt and Hamburg areas

Average years of experience: 5.3

9. Head of Public Affairs (Leiter*in Public Affairs)

Responsibilities: Public affairs is the strategic aim to integrate the interests of the employer into political decision-making processes. Also known as lobbying, the job description should not be confused with public relations (corporate communications)

Most common skills: Politics, international relations, strategic communication

Top regions hiring in: Berlin, Munich and Cologne-Bonn areas

Average years of experience: 7.2

10. Information security officer (Beauftragte*r für Informationssicherheit)

Responsibilities: Information Security Officers protect data in analogue and digital form. To do this, they ensure that sensitive data is only accessible to authorised persons at all times.

Most common skills: ISO 27001, Information Security Management System (ISMS), data protection management

Top regions hiring in: Frankfurt, Munich and Berlin areas

Average years of experience: 10.2

11. Specialist in talent acquisition (Spezialist*in für Talentakquise)

Responsibilities: Talent acquisition specialists identify suitable job candidates and take care of the strategic development of the Talent Acquisition department

Most common skills: Employer branding, sourcing, talent management

Top regions hiring in: Berlin, Munich and Frankfurt areas

Average years of experience: 3.8

12. Expansion manager

Responsibilities: Expansion managers accompany the growth of companies and take care of things like the purchase or leasing of business space in optimal locations

Most common skills: Business development, marketing, strategic planning

Top regions hiring in: Berlin, Düsseldorf and Munich areas

Average years of experience: 5.7

13. Test engineer (Prüfingenieur*in)

Responsibilities: Cars, wind turbines, lifts, amusement park rides and countless other technical constructions must be regularly checked for safety. This is where test engineers come into play

Most common skills: LabVIEW, Matlab, electrical engineering

Top regions hiring in: Munich, Hamburg and Tübingen areas

Average years of experience: 4 

14. Marketing (Marketingmitarbeiter*in)

Responsibilities: Marketing employees (Associates) support the planning and implementation of marketing activities for companies and organisations

Most common skills: Social media marketing, online marketing, content marketing

Top regions hiring in: Berlin, Hamburg and Munich

Average years of experience: 2.7

15. Data engineer (Dateningenieur*in)

Responsibilities: Data engineers deal with the collection, processing and checking of data

Most common skills: Apache Spark, Amazon Web Services (AWS), Apache Hadoop |

Top regions hiring in: Berlin, Munich and Cologne-Bonn areas

Average years of experience: 4.8 

16. Personnel officer recruiting (Personalreferent*in Recruiting)

Responsibilities: Recruiters use job advertisements and various channels to search for suitable candidates for open positions in the company and personally recruit suitable candidates

Most common skills: Active sourcing, e-recruiting, employer branding

Top regions. hiring in: Munich, Berlin and Cologne-Bonn areas

Average years of experience: 3.3 

A woman sits at a desk.

Are you looking for a chance in career? Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Finn Winkler

17. Manager in strategic partnerships (Manager*in Strategische Partnerschaften)

Job Purpose: Strategic partnerships managers are responsible for building and maintaining relationships with business partners to further the development and distribution of their own products and services

Most common skills: Business development, account management, product management

Top regions hiring in: Berlin, Munich and Frankfurt areas

Average years of experience: 6

18. Head of Software Development (Leiter*in Softwareentwicklung)

Responsibilities: Software Development Managers are responsible for all stages of software application development. They control and structure planning, organisation and execution

Most common skills: Agile methods, cloud computing, product management

Top regions hiring in: Berlin, Munich and Frankfurt areas

Average years of experience: 12.2 

READ ALSO:

19. Data science specialist

Responsibilities: Data science experts or data scientists help companies to make data-based decisions. They build a structured database from raw data, analyse data and prepare it with business background knowledge

Most common skills: Python (programming language), R, SQL

Top regions hiring in: Berlin, Munich and Hamburg areas

Average years of experience: 3

20. Robotics engineer (Robotik-Ingenieur*in)

Responsibilities: Robotics engineers develop and programme robots and other intelligent assistance systems, whether for medicine, gastronomy, or future cars.

Most common skills: Robotic Process Automation (RPA), UiPath, C++ 

Top regions hiring in: Munich, Frankfurt and the Hanover-Braunschweig-Göttingen-Wolfsburg areas 

Average years of experience: 3.8 

21. Investment associate (Investmentmitarbeiter*in)

Responsibilities: Which areas are worth investing in, which companies are suitable for takeover? This is checked by investment managers through market observations, financial modelling and due diligence procedures

Most common skills: Private equity, corporate finance, mergers & acquisitions (M&A)

Top regions hiring in: Frankfurt, Munich and Berlin areas

Average years of experience: 2.7 years

22. Chief Information Security Officer

Responsibilities: Many companies are not only urgently looking for information security officers (see position 10), senior positions in this professional field are also in high demand

Most common skills: Information Security Management System (ISMS), ISO 27001, IT Risk Management

Top regions hiring in: Munich, Frankfurt and Berlin areas

Average years of experience: 14.3

23. Manager in strategic sales (Manager*in im strategischen Vertrieb)

Responsibilities: Strategic Sales Managers usually look after selected target and existing customers over a longer period of time. Duties include preparing quotations and negotiating prices

Most common skills: Solution selling, business development, account management

Top regions hiring in: Munich, Stuttgart and Frankfurt areas

Average years of experience: 9.3

24. Communications manager (Kommunikationsmanager*in)

Responsibilities: Communications managers take care of PR work inside and outside a company – this includes planning communication strategies as well as implementing campaigns on social networks or organising press appointments and events

Most common skills: Strategic communication, public relations/PR, internal/external communication

Top regions hiring in: Berlin, Munich and Nuremberg areas

Average years of experience: 5.4 

25. Specialist writer for medicine (Fachautor*in Medizin)

Responsibilities: Medical writers produce documents in a medical context, such as study reports for scientific journals, texts for regulatory authorities and information sheets for medicines – but also journalistic texts for websites or magazines

Most common skills: Clinical studies, scientific writing, life sciences

Top regions hiring in: Frankfurt, Berlin and Munich areas

Average years of experience: 5.2

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