FRANKFURT Nov 12 Bosch, the world's
biggest auto parts supplier, is exiting the Desertec project,
the second German company to leave the consortium aimed at
expanding the use of renewable energy in Europe.
"The economic conditions (do) not allow a continuation of
its membership," spokeswoman for Bosch told Reuters late on
Monday, confirming Financial Times Deutschland's report due to
be published on Tuesday.
She said Bosch would no longer be a member by the end of
Bosch, best known for its spark plugs, had invested heavily
in solar cells and panels during the German industry's heyday.
Shareholders of the so-called Desertec Industrial Initiative
(DII) include German reinsurer Munich RE, utilities
E.ON and RWE, as well as Deutsche Bank
German industrial conglomerate Siemens announced
last month it was leaving Desertec and was pulling the plug on
its loss-making solar business as part of a drive to improve
Desertec, a consortium set up in 2009, envisages Europe
importing up to a fifth of its electricity from solar and wind
parks in North Africa and the Middle East by 2050.
With a projected budget of 400 billion euros ($508.44
billion), the plan has been dismissed as too expensive, too
risky and too big. The upheaval of the Arab Spring - the
revolutionary wave of popular protests and uprisings that began
first in Tunisia in late 2010 - has added to the doubts.