CEIBS 15th China Automotive Industry Forum 2017




The policy of the new US administration signals to significantly change the attitude of the United States to international trade and globalisation. Its first reaction to the almost finished TPP agreement, TTIP negotiation with the European Union, the long existing an functioning NAFTA as well as demands for introduction of import duties on cars and other products clearly shows that it will not be a “business as usual”. How will it affect the automotive production in China, the United States, South Korea and other key car producing countries and regions? China has already given a number signals that it can replace the United States as the leading free trade protagonist in the Pacific region and maybe elsewhere. And of course the departure of the United Kingdom from the EU, so called Brexit, may play an important role in this new international trade and business environment. Many of these issues will probably receive answers during the course of 2017.

The 15th CEIBS Automotive Forum deal with the important questions outlined above: the future of free trade and globalisation, in particular in view of the position of the new US administration, the fast arrival of smart solutions to our cities, automated driving and solution to global environmental problems that are expected from the automotive industry. It will include a dialogue with young people “how do I want to move tomorrow”?

I participated in the discussion panel about Effective city management and improved citizens’ quality of life and Evolution of the ‘smart city’ concept: how the Internet of Things will change our communities?

Smart Cities

Autonomous cars: a big opportunity for European industry.

The automotive industry is crucial for Europe’s prosperity. The sector provides jobs for 12 million people and accounts for 4% of the EU’s GDP. The EU is among the world’s biggest producers of motor vehicles and the sector represents the largest private investor in research and development (R&D);

– Around 12 million people work in the EU automotive sector. Manufacturing accounts for 3 million jobs, sales and maintenance for 4.3 million, and transport for 4.8 million;

Many car and truck manufacturers are working on the development and roll-out of vehicles with increasingly higher levels of automation, paving the way from current Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) towards full vehicle automation. An increasing number of high-end vehicles produced by European car manufacturers are already equipped with partial automation technologies (Automation Level 2), consisting of a combination of driver assistance systems like Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) and Lane Keeping Assist (LKA);

–  The next step will be the introduction of vehicles in which the driver can choose whether to drive manually or not. It is expected that passenger cars with conditional automation functions on highways (Automation Level 3 – full driving is performed by an automated driving system with the expectation that the human driver will respond appropriately to a request to intervene in real traffic conditions) will enter the market around 2020. Fully autonomous vehicles which can drive without human intervention and operate door-to-door with full freedom of movement are expected to be available on the market by 2025-30;

Connected and automated cars hold the promise to significantly improve road safety, decrease fuel consumption (and with that, lower emissions), reduce congestion and provide more comfort to passengers. With the global market for automated vehicles expected to reach 44 million by 2030, it is vital that Europe’s connectivity infrastructure is ready for handling millions of data points per second from these cars. Safety is paramount for connected and automated driving, which means that the highest levels of coverage, reliability and resilience are required from mobile networks;

Recognising these challenges, the European automotive and telecom sectors joined forces in September 2016 by launching an ‘EU Industry Dialogue on automated and connected driving’ to identify, and jointly overcome, the remaining barriers. However, these issues cannot be addressed by the industries alone, there is also clear need for supportive public policies;

The European sectors have defined three key areas in which they pro-actively want to cooperate. These are:

  • Connectivity: Firstly, automated driving will require upgraded communication systems that provide higher performance levels in terms of latency, throughput and reliability of the network. Europe needs to support private investment by all operators in order to foster the deployment of the necessary enhanced fixed and mobile infrastructure. For example, through ensuring a technology neutral regulatory framework, or through public funding, where investment is not feasible on a commercial basis
  • Standardisation: Secondly, standardisation is crucial for a timely and cost efficient market development of connected and automated driving. To that end, the two industries have agreed to map all relevant standardisation activities that are being undertaken, either by the auto industry or by the telecom industry, and to jointly determine priorities                             
  • Security: Thirdly, to obtain customer trust in connected and automated driving, it is critical to ensure that all data transmission to and from vehicles, as well as all data processing that is required, occurs in a secure manner. Both sectors are already involved in industry-led initiatives in this field, but have now agreed to use this dialogue to strengthen their cooperation.

– A number of initiatives around standardisation are proceeding, addressing the technical and infrastructure hurdles. The family of Wireless Access in Vehicular Environments (WAVE) standards are established to support a reliable V2V and V2X wireless communication. The European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI) is involved in the ITS system.

– European Commission is working to enable interoperability and launched the US/EU Standardizations Harmonization Working Group in 2014;

– In 2016, a 5G Automotive Association was formed by key players like Audi, BMW, Daimler, Huawei and Qualcomm. It focuses on technical and regulatory issues leveraging next generation mobile networks, and committed to push forward the commercial availability and global market penetration;

Declaration of Amsterdam – signed 14 April 2016 – Europe’s transport ministers, the European Commission and the European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA) have reached an agreement on cooperation in the field of connected and automated driving. All parties agreed to work together to ensure a successful deployment of these smart technologies across Europe.

With the Declaration of Amsterdam on connected and automated driving, member states, the European Commission and private sector have agreed on joint goals and joint actions to facilitate the introduction of connected and automated driving on Europe’s roads. This should prevent a patchwork of rules and regulations arising within the EU, which would be an obstacle to both manufacturers and road users.

The Declaration of Amsterdam launched of a structural dialogue. The first High Level Meeting was held in the Netherlands in February 2017. There were representatives from 24 Member States, Norway and Switzerland, the European Commission and the automotive and telecom industries.

High Level Meeting have agreed on a working agenda and giving top priority to the following topics:

1) Data sharing – the aim is to realize this category of data sharing for large-scale deployment in these areas by 2019;

2) Large scale (cross border) testing focusing on the most promising use cases and sharing experiences on these tests; It is necessary to organize large-scale cross border testing of innovative connected and automated driving systems to further the technological advancement, demonstrate their performance, prove their positive impact on safety for all road users, and assess socio-economic impact; there is a need to develop a joint vision on the digital infrastructure needed to support connected and automated driving;

3) Coherence with V2X *(V2X is both: V2V vehicle to vehicle and V2I vehicle to infrastructure) communication technologies and necessary digital transport infrastructures;

4) Coherent international, European and national regulation. Member States agree to work together and keep each other informed on the development of national legislation affecting consistent EU-wide deployment of connected and automated driving focusing both on horizontal and vertical dimensions.