President Macron’s visit to Marseille: CARBON mentioned several times

President Macron’s visit to Marseille: CARBON mentioned several times

During his visit to Marseille from June 26th to June 28th, President Emmanuel Macron addressed various topics, including the reindustrialization and decarbonization of the Grand Port Maritime de Marseille. He expressed his support for green industry projects and the development of decarbonized energy in the region. Thus, he mentioned CARBON twice, first during his speech at the Mucem on June 27th, and then at the Port of Marseille Fos on June 28th.

In March 2023, CARBON announced the establishment of its integrated photovoltaic gigafactory in the industrial port area of Fos-sur-Mer. This project, the largest of its kind in Europe to date, will produce 5 GW of cells and 3.5 GW of modules.

CARBON: a green reindustrialization project supported by the state and Emmanuel Macron

CARBON’s project, announced as early as 2022, aligns with the strategic goals of promoting green reindustrialization. The industrial company will contribute to energy transition by producing French solar panels necessary to meet the growing demand for energy and develop renewable energies.

CARBON also aims to reduce France’s and Europe’s dependence on China. Currently, 97% of wafers are produced in China, as reported by the International Energy Agency (IEA). To achieve this, CARBON will integrate the core of the PV value chain by producing ingots, bricks, wafers, cells, and photovoltaic modules. This approach effectively combines reindustrialization with ecological transition, which is a key focus for the French government.

“We have two major projects that we want to develop to manufacture solar panels in France. One of them, with CARBON, should be developed in the region. (…) I want us to accelerate solar production and reindustrialization, which can be done here around the port and within the industrial area.” (Emmanuel Macron, June 27th, at the Mucem in Marseille)

A photovoltaic gigafactory located in the first ecological planning pilot territory in France

The support for the CARBON project from both the state and local authorities is motivated by the broader ambition of the Région Sud to become a pioneer in ecological planning. This vision has garnered support from all levels of local governance.

Echoing this ambition, Emmanuel Macron explained on June 28th at the Port of Marseille Fos: “Here [in the Grand Port Maritime de Marseille], we should be able to produce more, produce more solar and wind energy, and produce the upstream industrial sector, especially with CARBON.”

Christophe Castaner, President of the Grand Port Maritime de Marseille, further expressed a real willingness to participate in decarbonization and ecological transition: “This will be the largest production unit for photovoltaic panels, from the brick to the panel, with CARBON being born right now in our territory.” (Christophe Castaner, June 28th, at the Port of Marseille Fos).

CARBON presents a sample of its future solar cells to Emmanuel Macron and Christophe Castaner

The presidential visit to Marseille was an opportunity for CARBON to present samples of its future cells to the President of the Republic and the President of the Grand Port Maritime de Marseille. Pierre-Emmanuel Martin, President of CARBON, offered Emmanuel Macron and Christophe Castaner TOPCon cells, produced in partnership with the CEA and the INES (National Solar Energy Institute).

In two and a half years, these cells will come off the production lines of CARBON’s integrated and sovereign gigafactory located in Fos-sur-Mer, in the Region Sud.