European countries have shifted from anger to acceptance of the U.S. clean energy subsidy package, which has created tension in transatlantic trade relations. French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire and German Vice Chancellor and Economy Minister Robert Habeck met with U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen and Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo to discuss the matter.
European Officials' Message to the U.S.
The European officials conveyed their message of ensuring the implementation of the American law with full transparency. They have kept their campaign for a more inclusive law, but in light of the uncertainty, they believe the EU deserves a transparent accounting of how the U.S. government will use the law to fund industry.
EU's Top Concern with the IRA
The meetings with U.S. officials did not result in any concrete agreement to alleviate the EU's main concern with the IRA, which is the North American assembly requirement for subsidized electric vehicles. However, the sides agreed that implementing the IRA should include as many EU components as possible.
Europe's Own Subsidy Scheme
European nations are developing their subsidy scheme to prevent the migration of EU manufacturing to the U.S., where energy costs are lower. The ministers stated that Europe's need for its green tech plan is clearer than ever.
Working Together for a Clean Energy Future
The U.S. officials encouraged the EU to boost its clean energy industries and stressed the need for innovation and development of technology on both sides of the Atlantic to achieve their collective climate goals. The German and French officials emphasized their promise to cooperate on creating a common market for the components of clean energy products and to find concrete measures to increase diversity in the supply chain.
Sen. Joe Manchin's Statement
Sen. Joe Manchin, who played a key role in crafting the IRA, defended the bill as an important step toward U.S. energy security. He encouraged European officials to offer incentives to increase investment in clean energy and expressed concern about the EU's approach to fighting climate change.