The highly anticipated ‘Leading the mobility transformation: The future of the EU auto industry’ Summit organised by the European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA) took place on Wednesday 4 September. More than 300 stakeholders in the field of mobility gathered in Brussels to discuss how the EU auto sector can take the global lead in the transformation of mobility.
ACEA Secretary General Erik Jonnaert opened the Summit by stating that the aim was “to identify the opportunities in store for automotive in Europe, while also drawing lessons from some of the past mistakes made in our industry.” Jonnaert emphasised that the event marked the beginning of a new chapter for ACEA: “One of strengthened cooperation with all EU policy makers and stakeholders to successfully drive the transformation of the EU auto industry.”
The second keynote speech was delivered by Anton Nikitin of the City of Vilnius. Nikitin argued that mobility is not about fancy apps: “Mobility is about the people, and serving their basic needs.” Vilnius’s Head of Sustainable Urban Mobility stressed that there is no point in cities banning certain forms of transport. “We are not going to force people to use specific mobility solutions. It is a question of offering better and more convenient options,” according to Nikitin.
Subsequently, Mervi Kaikkonen took the floor to talk about the policy implication of the mobility transformation from the perspective of the Finnish EU Presidency. Ms Kaikkonen stated that “the EU has a good opportunity to be a global leader in sustainable and innovative mobility solutions. However, quickly developing technologies and business models cannot thrive with slow, inflexible rules and legislators.” That’s why she argued that EU Regulations need to be technologically neutral: “It is not regulators’ task to choose one technology over the other.”
The final keynote was given by Andreas Tschiesner, Senior Partner at McKinsey, who talked about the challenges and opportunities facing Europe’s auto manufacturers. Tschiesner pointed out that following the rapid shift from horses to engine-powered vehicles between 1900 and 1912, the mobility sector is now arriving at its second major tipping point: the redefinition of mobility as we know it. He added that the global automotive revenue pool is expected to double by 2030, but that in the future “50% of revenues will come from service-oriented value chains.”
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