COLOGNE, Germany – "The auto industry is one of the world's great growth industries," Ford of Europe chairman and CEO, Stephen Odell told delegates to yesterday's Automotive News Europe Congress in Cologne.
"By 2020, it's estimated the annual global vehicle market will be around 112 million vehicles. That's 112 million vehicles that have to be designed, engineered and built somewhere in the world – why not here in Europe?", he commented.
To make the most of that opportunity, the Ford executive said the European automotive industry needed "the support of government to approach this challenge with the tenacity of our competitors elsewhere in the world."
Echoing comments he made earlier this week at an international forum in London, Odell called for an EU-wide industry policy and fair trade agreements.
He added: "Let me be clear, we are not looking for favours, for special treatment. We ask for policies that give our great industries the opportunity to do what they do best.
"Given that support, the European vehicle industry has a viable future. We have the experience, the skills and the determination to succeed on our continent. We can match -- indeed I believe we can better -- anything in the world."