Tesla’s Musk says must keep to schedule on European gigafactory – minister By Reuters

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© Reuters. SpaceX owner and Tesla CEO Elon Musk arrives on the red carpet for the automobile awards “Das Goldene Lenkrad” (The golden steering wheel) given by a German newspaper in Berlin, Germany, November 12, 2019. REUTERS/Hannibal Hanschke

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BERLIN (Reuters) -Tesla CEO Elon Musk has made clear how important it is for the company to keep to its schedule for the construction of its European gigafactory in the German state of Brandenburg, its Economy Minister Joerg Steinbach said.

Tesla (NASDAQ:) also said it was willing to intensify communication in the site near the town of Gruenheide and involve local citizens more, Steinbach told Reuters after a meeting with Musk in Germany on Wednesday.

Tesla has pushed back the expected opening of its 5.8 billion euros ($6.8 billion) gigafactory near Berlin to late 2021, blaming German bureaucratic hurdles.

The plant, which will manufacture batteries as well as electric cars, has also faced local public resistance due to environmental concerns.

The environmental agency in Brandenburg has yet to give final approval – meaning a further delay cannot be ruled out, even until 2022.

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