PARIS — French Economy Minister Bruno Le Maire on Wednesday announced a new bill that will include a range of incentives to encourage industries to bring production plants back to France.
“In the coming days, I will propose a propose a bill on green industries … that will include tax, regulation and legislative measures to accelerate the installation of industrial sites in France,” Le Maire said during an interview on French radio France Inter.
“This bill will aim at encouraging green industries, green hydrogen and electric batteries production, nuclear energy of course, and renewable energies. Let’s take advantage of this moment … to become the leading decarbonized nation in Europe,” he said.
Le Maire said the measures would come alongside France and Germany’s fight to get EU partners to adopt “a European Inflation Reduction Act” that would include “bigger, swifter and more simplified subsidies” for green industries.
France has been at the forefront of efforts to stiffen the EU’s response to an American $369 billion industrial subsidy scheme known as the Inflation Reduction Act, among fears that the subsidies may siphon away investment from the European continent.
During a state visit by French President Emmanuel Macron to the U.S. in December, U.S. President Joe Biden signaled that his administration was willing to make “tweaks” to soften the scheme’s impact on European businesses. It appears the EU has obtained some concessions on U.S. tax credits for electric cars, but France has made the case that these are not enough.
EU leaders have agreed to ask the European Commission to come up with proposals to make the bloc more competitive in the face of the green subsidy spurge in the U.S. These are expected to be discussed at a European Council summit in February.