Will the post-Covid world be synonymous with reindustrialization? By revealing serious vulnerabilities in the French and European economies, a consequence of several decades of deindustrialization, the Covid-19 crisis has brought the subject of reindustrialization back to the fore. As Florent Menegaux is keen to emphasize, “industry has regained something of its novelty in France and Europe.” He adds: “Even without the unprecedented economic situation related to the pandemic and the uncertainty that entails, neither competition from emerging countries nor competitive pressure on prices will disappear if we click our fingers, and nor will the current environmental challenges [...]. If French industry is to be revived sustainably, there are five conditions that absolutely must be fulfilled.

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Industry has regained something of its novelty in France and Europe. If French industry is to be revived sustainably, there are five conditions that absolutely must be fulfilled.
Florent Menegaux, Group Michelin CEO

The five essential conditions for successful reindustrialization, according to Florent Menegaux

  • “Business and government need to be on the same track

Industry needs a stable regulatory and fiscal framework...

  • “Locate strategic, sensitive or government activities on our territory”

“The challenge is not to save industries and products whose future is threatened [...] We need to invest in sectors where France has a card to play on the world stage, giving priority to environmentally-virtuous activities with high added value.

  • “Support change rather than hindering it”

Industry is like a living organism: if it doesn’t adapt, it will die.[...] Michelin also needs to constantly adjust its industrial footprint to the realities of the market.”

  • “Europe must be a ‘home’ that protects its citizens”

“The European Union is the only framework in which France can preserve its competitiveness [...] This will require, in particular, ambitious common public policies and stringent technological and environmental regulations.”

  • “Successfully overhaul education and training”

“Success will require, among other things, the development of apprenticeships and ongoing training in new trades. In addition, as of now, there is an urgent need to align the economic sector more closely with the world of education, and to make young people understand that industry can offer them a promising future.”

Will these five conditions be enough? Florent Menegaux is convinced that these conditions are the keys to success, but the Group CEO insists that urgent action must be taken: “France is fortunate to be positioned in sectors of excellence. In this sense, the initiative to reintroduce a commission to the plan will generate visibility and free us from the short-term contingency planning that has paralyzed us for decades, provided it works hand-in-hand with its European neighbors towards a strategic vision. We hold all the keys to success. Let’s not delay any longer!”

 

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