The head of the energy technology group Siemens Energy, Christian Bruch, has spoken out in favor of clear rules against advancing low-cost suppliers from the Far East.

"I am not a fan of sealing off the European market from Chinese competitors," Bruch told journalists.

However, there must be clear rules, for example on financing, where the guarantees come from and what is paid for them. Some Chinese wind turbine manufacturers had built up massive overcapacity. However, it is also clear: "The energy transition will not work without China. It is almost impossible to build a wind turbine without relying on Chinese suppliers."

The intention of some manufacturers to keep their factories running at full capacity, even though they are losing money in the process, is also understandable in part because the work is simply needed, said Bruch. This then brings challenges for the entire market. In the wind turbine industry, with players such as Siemens Energy, Nordex, Vestas and GE Vernova, there are concerns that state-subsidized suppliers from the People's Republic could gain more and more market share with low prices. Many suppliers could then suffer a similar fate to the solar industry, which is now heavily dominated by Chinese companies. The EU Commission wants to scrutinize the companies.

"If Europe allows cheap imported technology from China or any other country to have unrestricted access to the market, jobs will inevitably be lost," emphasizes Bruch. If necessary, the EU would have to make regulations to ensure that part of the value creation takes place in Europe.

"We need fair competition."

The trick is to find a middle ground between an absolutely free market and a market that relies heavily on local value creation, as is the case in the USA, for example, said the manager. "There has to be something in between."

Bruch was convinced that the market in the USA would remain extremely important for Siemens Energy regardless of the outcome of the presidential election. The USA is an absolute core market for his company. That is why he will remain in the onshore market.

In Germany, Bruch called on the federal government to quickly provide clarity on the power plant strategy. If the auctions do not start soon, it will be difficult to keep to the 2030 schedule. So far, the federal government has only stated that hydrogen-capable gas-fired power plants with up to ten gigawatts are to be built to cover fluctuating electricity generation from wind and solar power. Details such as the remuneration are still open.

(Report by Christoph Steitz, edited by Tom Käckenhoff, edited by Ralf Banser. If you have any queries, please contact our editorial team at berlin.newsroom@thomsonreuters.com (for politics and the economy) or frankfurt.newsroom@thomsonreuters.com (for companies and markets).)

- by Christoph Steitz