While at the same time Elon Musk is dealing with a not-too-happy Chinese Communist Party, he also appears to be hitting roadblocks in Germany.
Since announcing plans for expansion in 2019, Tesla’s proposed factory in Berlin has been “torpedoed by environmental regulations, unexploded WW2 bombs and labor laws,” according to the The Daily Mail.
The “huge construction delays” and “government red tape” means that the facility may not wind up producing any vehicles until next year, the report notes. The facility had previously been scheduled to open on July 1 of this year.
Elon Musk took to Twitter this week – hilariously after jetting off in his hydrocarbon burning private jet, according to the report – pleading with those involved to “please accelerate” progress in Germany.
Giga Berlin suppliers please accelerate!
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 18, 2021
Musk has visited the plant on Monday but Brandenburg’s economy minister Joerg Steinbach said there were no meetings with Musk and that the visit was “technical in character”.
Musk announced plans for the facility back in November 2019 around the same time Tesla’s Shanghai factory was coming online. Musk reportedly chose Germany so he could avoid the Brexit-induced administrative hassle that would come with moving into the UK.
To this date, he is still waiting for environmental approval for his plant, despite stating last July: ‘Giga Berlin will come together at an impossible-seeming speed.’
Among the environmental roadblocks the company faces are controversies with removing trees and animal habitats, as well as the company having to remove bomb shells from the construction site.
While physical construction nears an end, a mountain of legal issues remains. Recall, in February, Tesla was ordered by a German court to stop cutting down trees to make space for its factory.
When asked during his most recent trip about opening, Musk said: “It’s hard to predict with precision because you can only make the cars when all of the pieces are here.”
“I think there could be less bureaucracy, that would be better,” he continued. “There should be some kind of active process for removal of rules. Otherwise, over time, the rules will just accumulate and you get more and more rules until eventually you can’t do anything.”
Garrett Nelson, senior equity analyst at CFRA Research, recently told Forbes: “Tesla is doing everything possible to stay on track with its guidance, but the reality is that first production could be delayed until early 2022.”