Photo: Afghan National Police
The Netherlands and the rest of Europe risk being left behind in the world, ASML CEO Peter Winnink fears. According to him, a clear vision from the government is needed to change that, but he misses that. “We have many separate solutions, but they are not related to each other,” said the chairman of the board of the important manufacturer of chip machines at Eindhoven University of Technology on Monday. “The government has to present a long-term vision. There is nothing, there is a lack of focus.”
During the opening of the academic year, Weinink expressed concern about earning capacity in the Netherlands and other European countries. He called for more cooperation and taking risks in order to compete with other power blocs. “If you look at the major shifts, things are moving faster in other parts of the world.”
According to Vinink, it is clear that the United States is now taking the lead when it comes to technology, while East Asian countries specialize in renewable electricity, electric cars and batteries. “In 20 years you’ll be buying a Chinese car and Japanese stuff, because they’re better at it,” Winink explained. He says this is a problem. “And we can do something about it, because we have world-class companies and researchers.”
The ASML CEO says the government should primarily play a facilitating role. As far as it is concerned, this also requires better collaboration between the different ministries.
Wenink also sees a problem with “complacency” in society itself. According to him, we have all become “fat, stupid and happy”.
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