Brexit uncertainty prompts Tesla to choose Germany over UK for first Europe plant

Brexit uncertainty prompts Tesla to choose Germany over UK for first Europe plant
By Rachael Kennedy
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Tesla CEO told Auto Express that "Brexit uncertainty" had influenced the company's decision to open its first European plant in Berlin.

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Tesla is planning to open its first European factory in Germany after its founder and CEO said plans to open the plant in the UK were scrapped due to Brexit making it "too risky".

Speaking at The Golden Steering Wheel Awards on Tuesday evening, Elon Musk confirmed plans for the new factory, which he hopes to open by 2021.

"We’ve decided to put the Tesla Gigafactory Europe in the Berlin area," he said, adding: "I come to Berlin a lot – Berlin rocks!"

In a later interview with trade magazine Auto Express, the serial entrepreneur said Brexit had influenced the company's choice as it had "made it too risky to put a Gigafactory in the UK."

Musk has previously suggested setting up a Tesla base in Britain.

Some background information released by Tesla on the new plant said it would produce both the Model Y and Model 3 and would be a "first phase" for expansion plans on the continent.

It will also be the company's fourth battery plant, following two in the US and one in China.

Tesla declined to comment further on Musk's comments when approached by Euronews.

In response, German Economy Minister Peter Altmaier said the decision marked a "great success" for Germany, and was a milestone in the production of electric cars and batteries.

"A big reason of joy, recognition and confidence!" he wrote on Twitter.

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