The Minister President of Bavaria, Dr. Markus Söder, toured the Audi plant in Ingolstadt this Monday to witness the restart of production as well as the extensive measures being taken to protect the health of workers there. In addition, he took advantage of the opportunity for a personal meeting with Audi’s new Chairman of the Board of Management, Markus Duesmann, talking to him about the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the automotive industry. The plant manager, Achim Heinfling, guided the Minister President together with Markus Duesmann and Peter Mosch, the General Works Council Chairmen, through the production facility. Starting today, Audi will be manufacturing the Audi A3 and Q2 on one line in three-shift rotation again after production was started in one shift two weeks ago following a coronavirus-related stop in production. The company is also planning to resume production of the Audi A4 and A5 in stages starting at the end of May. As production is being restarted, the focus at all times will be on protecting the health of employees. During his tour, Minister President Söder was given an overview of the extensive measures being taken to comply with social distancing and hygiene rules and to help people avoid contact with one another.
Dr. Markus Söder, Bavarian Minister President:
“The car is the draft horse of our industry. We want a 4,000-euro innovation bonus for low-emission cars and a 1,000-euro recycling bonus for older cars. Climate protection and affordable, future-proof mobility belong together. We need a sustainable guiding impulse in this crisis. Especially in times of a looming recession, politicians must and will set a strong signal. That is why we are securing jobs, protecting the climate, and improving the competitiveness of our automotive industry. This can even catapult us forward after the coronavirus crisis.”
Markus Duesmann, Chairman of the Board of Management of AUDI AG:
“Thanks to the commitment of our employees, we have successfully managed to gradually restart our plants in Europe and China. We are doing everything so that Audi can hit the ground running following this difficult period. Nevertheless, we will be dealing with the aftereffects of the pandemic for some time to come. That makes it all the more important for us to exchange information frequently with the government of the state of Bavaria.”
Peter Mosch, Chairman of the General Works Council of AUDI AG:
“We welcome the support that the Bavarian government has provided to the domestic automotive industry. The first production lines at Audi are running again while adhering to regulations on hygiene and social distancing. Now, what is important is for us to send the right signals for reviving the entire Bavarian and German economy. Providing the automotive industry with targeted assistance in the form of a bonus on the purchase of a new vehicle would have a tremendous impact on the environment and jobs in our country.”