Tesla opens a Gigafactory near Berlin, the 1st European plant.

Tesla, the electric car maker, is opening its first European plant Tuesday in Berlin to compete with German automakers.

Tesla opens a Gigafactory near Berlin, the 1st European plant.

According to the company, its "Gigafactory", which will employ 12,000 people each year and produce 500,000 vehicles per year, is now open.

The opening ceremony was attended by Robert Habeck, Economy Minister, and Olaf Scholz, German Chancellor.

Habeck stated that the opening of the factory was "a nice sign" that gasoline-powered vehicles can be replaced by electric cars at a time in which Germany and other countries are trying to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and get off Russian oil.

The vast facility was built by Tesla less than three years before it received its official permits. The company would have had the site levelled if those permits hadn't been issued.

Habeck stated, "That's an entirely different company risk culture." He was asked to contrast Tesla's approach with the slower pace of German construction projects, such as Berlin’s new airport. It opened in with a nine-year delay .

Environmental activists have warned that the factory could cause problems with drinking water supply in the area.

These warnings were dismissed by Tesla. Tesla refused media access to the ceremony and site Tuesday.


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