IV President Georg Knill hopes that the Steyr location, which MAN wants to close, will continue to exist. “Absolutely” there is still a perspective for the location, said Knill in the ORF “press hour” and praised the plan of the automotive-experienced investor, which was rejected by a large majority by the workforce, as a “future solution”. Knill wants the government's “comeback plan” to lower non-wage labor costs. The crisis costs could be "earned back through growth".
"I think there will be ways back to the negotiating table," Knill hoped that Wolf could still be brought into the Steyr boat. "I hope that the open issues can be clarified at the negotiating table and that a solution can be found for MAN." As on Friday, Knill ruled out state participation in the "Salzburger Nachrichten".
He understands the disappointment of the employees about MAN about the "bang" of the sale or the end of the location. MAN wants to close the location because of "inefficiencies" and a "lack of competitiveness". Lawyers would have to clarify the question of the location guarantee. Wolf has "a really good concept, it would be a blessing for the region".
MAN shows impressively that there is a need for an active location policy, which has not been sufficiently in place in the past few decades. Knill again praised the reconstruction plan announced by the government. In the case of the points submitted to the EU - which are only partly publicly known - points relating to digitization, greening and education could provide a “boost out of the crisis”. Knill highlighted 100 million euros for hydrogen projects, "some" in the automotive sector and almost 200 million euros for the education sector.
"Participate in the upswing"
From the government meeting that starts tomorrow, Knill expects a lot on the subject of the “comeback plan”. It is about making the best possible use of opportunities that are opening up on the global market for Austria and its people. “The world will grow by six percent this year. This is an opportunity to be able to participate disproportionately in this upswing. "
The investment bonus is one of the federal government's most important projects to stimulate the economy. This recently expired and could be extended. After the liquidity aid in the course of the corona aid, new aid is now needed: "It now needs measures to strengthen equity." Knill recalled the prospect of a reduction in corporate tax, a long-term demand from the Federation of Industry.
Austria has a competitive disadvantage when it comes to non-wage labor costs. New jobs should be supported by means of relief. That must be the subject of the “comeback plan”, demanded Knill. New jobs for the long-term unemployed and older workers could be given more support.
"We as an industry bring growth," said Knill when asked what the industry is willing to give - because someone has to pay the cost of the billions in corona aid. "In the next eight years we will have earned back this crisis through growth." The delicate plant of growth must not now be stifled by new burdens. Efficiency measures are also needed in administration. “A lean, strong state” is needed, then the welfare state would be affordable.
"Tax reform not to the detriment of industry"
Regarding a possible CO2 tax, Knill pointed out that, according to the government program, the tax and duty ratio should drop from 43 to below 40 percent. He expected an eco-social tax reform in the autumn, but what this would look like is open, it must in any case be revenue-neutral. “There must be no additional costs for the industry in this context.” The climate targets would have to be achieved with support from the public sector. "And it also takes a certain amount of time."
The IV is only expecting growth of 2,5 to 3 percent this year and "a significant boost next year, so that over two years we will have overcompensated for the minus of 6,6 percent from 2020," said Knill.
Regarding the change to the state budget, which the Ministry of Finance announced on Sunday, Knill said that Austria could afford it. “The additional expenses are justified. We come to a national debt ratio of almost 90 percent. In a European comparison that is absolutely fine. ”With the expected growth over the next few years, this can be demonstrated. "The point now is how we can get out of this crisis stronger than before."
"Political Culture Sunk"
Knill was reluctant to answer questions about ÖBAG and its boss Thomas Schmid. The political culture has sunk so much that one wonders what is happening here. Schmid will be the sole director next year. You will learn from the processes and do better next time. Regarding the WKÖ control report, Knill said that "President (Harald, note) Mahrer is investigating the matter accordingly and turning it off".
Regarding the corona vaccinations, Knill confirmed statements in his recent interview in the "Salzburger Nachrichten", according to which the companies and their infrastructure should be used for the vaccination.