Germany’s BMW to put €1 billion into electric vehicles in Austria

German auto manufacturer BMW said on Monday it would invest "around one billion euros" in the production of electric vehicles at a plant in Austria from 2025.

Germany's BMW to put €1 billion into electric vehicles in Austria
The headquarters of German carmaker BMW (Bayerische Motoren Werke AG) are pictured in Munich, southern Germany, on May 20, 2022. (Photo by Christof STACHE / AFP)

Altogether, 600,000 units a year should roll off the line at the factory in Steyr under the investment plan, set to run until 2030, BMW said in a statement.

From 2025, BMW will “develop and produce the next generation of e-drives” at the Austrian site, BMW’s production chief Milan Nedeljkovic said.

The refurbishment of the plant will see two new production lines added and the location expanded by 60,000 square metres.

The new facilities would require €710 million in investment, while €230 million would be dedicated to boosting vehicle development at Steyr.

“Around half” the 4,400 employees at the site would be working on “e-mobility” by 2030, plant boss Alexander Susanek said.

The Bavarian manufacturer said it aimed to have two million electric vehicles on the road by 2025, promising 13 new electric models and a revamp of its Mini brand.

BMW has already said it will spend €400 million to upgrade its home factory in Munich to produce electric vehicles.

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German exports rise again despite slowdown fears

German exports increased for the third month in a row, data published Wednesday showed, despite fears that Europe's largest economy could soon pitch into recession.

German exports rise again despite slowdown fears

Germany exported €134.3 billion worth of goods in June, 4.5 percent more than in May, according to seasonally adjusted figures from the federal statistics agency Destatis.

The closely watched indicator was 18.4 percent higher than in June last year.

Germany’s trade balance remained positive at €6.4 billion, with the total value of goods imported in June sitting at €127.9 billion.

Exports to EU countries were rose by 3.9 percent from May, while those to other countries rose by 5.3 percent.

Exports to Russia increased by 14.5 percent between May and June, albeit from a relatively low base.

The export figure for June was 40.3 percent below its level in 2021 with trade collapsing after Western countries slapped tariffs on Russia for its invasion of Ukraine in February.

Despite the overall improvement, businesses have reported pessimism about the outlook for the Germany’s export-driven economy.

A survey published by the German Ifo Institute last week showed their export expectations had dropped.

The darkening business climate also suggested that Germany was “on the cusp of a recession”, said think-tank president Clemens Fuest.

The German economy stagnated between April and June, registering growth of zero percent, according to official figures published last week.