French business leaders more optimistic than German regarding the energy transition Click To Tweet
  • 74% of French business leaders consider the energy transition as an opportunity for growthand access to new markets, compared to 43% of German business leaders
  • German business leaders demonstrate more trust in the ability of their government to successfully manage the energy transition than the French

Technological innovations and new markets: the French business leaders see more opportunities in the energy transition

French and German entrepreneurs agree on the urgency of an energy transition policy (84% of French leaders and 87% of the German ones).

However, French leaders are more optimistic than their German homologues regarding its impact:

  • 87% of French leaders believe that the energy transition will lead to technological innovations, compared to 68% of German
  • 74% of French leaders anticipate positive impacts in terms of growth and access to new markets compared to 43% of German leaders

French companies not heard enough by politicians while German ones are consulted

78% of French business leaders consider that their suggestions and requests are not taken into account by their government, German leaders on the other hand feel heard, at least 55% of them do.

This said, both the French and German private sectors consider themselves as major players of the transition:

  • 63% of French business leaders and 52% of German business leaders consider having an important role to play in the energy transition
  • In fact, 8 out of 10 French companies declare having already made or being ready to make investments, notably in terms of energy efficiency or renewable energy.

German business leaders have more faith in their government than the French do to successfully carry forward the energy transition

German business leader have much more faith in the ability of their government to achieve the objectives of the energy transition than French business leaders:

  • German business leaders are more positive about the objectives set by their government which they see as ambitious (66%), realistic and achievable (63%) and concerted (58%)
  • Whereas French business leaders consider the objectives of their government less ambitious (54%) and lin particular les realistic and achievable (37%) because not clear (27%) nor concerted (26%) and not set at the right pace (28%).

The perception of the implementation of the energy transition by politicians demonstrates a similar trend:

  • 46% of German business leaders believe that the means committed by their government to the energy transition are sufficient compare to only 16% of French business leader.

A call for greater French-German cooperation

Amongst the means identified to facilitate the success of the energy transition, greater French-German cooperation comes first:

  • 79% of French businessmen and 65% of German wish for a greater cooperation between France and Germany in the fields of energy transition.

According to Stephen Boucher, Programme Director for the European Climate Foundation: « Many negative things are being said in France about the Energiewende, the German energy transition. This survey demonstrates that French business leaders have a much more positive and nuanced image. In substance, they tell us that ‘the transition is urgent, that it is an opportunity for growth and innovation but that we need to commit the right resources to it’. »

« While they are ready to get engaged in favour of the transition, they also suggest that France could miss the industrial opportunities that the transition bring if more ambitious objectives are not set, additional resources committed, and a great consultation of the private sector organised. »