The DGA (Directorate General of Armament) rightly takes a very negative view of the Volkswagen “restructuring” plan imposed on its subsidiary. MAN Energy Solutions which manufactures, among other things, the back-up engines for our nuclear submarines… In fact, with an imposed savings plan of 450 million and the elimination of 2,600 jobs to be carried out before 2023 which will involve stopping production of the equipment of propulsion intended for military ships, our entire nuclear submarine sector is weakened and threatened.
In fact, the ANS sub-sector (the Nuclear Attack Submarines with in particular the new generation Barracuda) and that of the new SLNE program (the Nuclear Gear Launchers) are dependent on the subcontracting of the German MAN Energy Solutions.
This is therefore a new characteristic example of a strategic stake for France, both in terms of military, industrial and territorial. Knowing that another German engine group, MTU, formerly present in the capital of the company MAN and having sold its shares to it in 2006, continues to manufacture submarine engines for its part, we understand not only the difficulty of operation but possibly the potential conflict of interest that could appear in the event of the disappearance of the activity propulsion of MAN Energy Solutions. We would find ourselves totally “in the hands” and at the goodwill of a new German manufacturer without any guarantee in terms of quality and standards but of course also in terms of deadlines and prices! …
It is clear that the only solution in the long term is the buyout by French entities of this activity. propulsion intended for military ships based in Saint-Nazaire. The ideal would obviously be a buyer industrial. It should belong to the sector and could be accompanied in the short and medium term by the BPI (Public Investment Bank) and financed with equity (only partially because purely financial governance must be avoided), ideally by a large Strategic Investment Fund (SIF). Now this FIS – which is sorely lacking in France – should itself be able to benefit from specific allocations from the European Central Bank (ECB) in Frankfurt. It has indeed proceeded all-out – and still proceeds today, although in a slightly less important way – to the creation of money. (Quantitative Easing) dedicated almost exclusively to repurchases of doubtful bank assets. It should now allocate part of this “quantitative easing” (up to 50% of this money creation, for example) to the real economy which really produces value and wealth, via national strategic investment funds! This allocation should be made in proportion to the respective economic weight of the countries of the European Union, which would give a share of 15 to 20% for France. And it would therefore be quite reasonable to obtain 18 to 25 billion in this way out of the 250 billion QE that are still created each year by the ECB to constitute our Strategic Investment Fund.
Needless to say, this FIS should be steered according to its main axes of development by a State-strategist worthy of the name which would have defined our main priorities of re-industrialization, and of relocation if necessary, in partnership with industrialists and professional branches, themselves remitted in working order. I myself, taking into account my own industrial and political experience for more than 30 years (precisely the duration of the deindustrialisation of France!) Proposed ten sectors to be favored to initiate the re-industrialization of France and recover our industrial sovereignty. And our defense industry, with our aeronautical and the nuclear, are of course in a very good position in these areas of excellence to be strengthened and safeguarded.
In conclusion, we must repeat how vital France’s industrial renewal is for the future. It is only on this condition, that we will be able to find an authentic strategic autonomy and our sovereignty in all directions because the virtues of theindustry for a developed country are quadruple. Theindustry – With l’agriculture / agro-food to a lesser degree – is the only sector to bring: 1) theindependence economic ; 2) a surplus trade balance thanks to substantial margins; 3) a crisis resilience, particularly financial and 4) a training effect on the economy without commensurate with all other sectors, in particular through subcontracting and the external services generated.
This is why all the opportunities allowing to reconstitute our industrial fabric must be seized immediately … but for that it is necessary at least to have a vpolitical will and adequate tools.