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Elon Musk: focused on getting self-driving Teslas in wide release by year-end

·1-min read

By Nerijus Adomaitis and Nora Buli

STAVANGER, Norway (Reuters) - Tesla chief Elon Musk said on Monday he aimed to get the electric auto maker's self-driving technology ready by year-end and hopes it could be in wide release in the United States and possibly in Europe, depending on regulatory approval.

Speaking at an energy conference in Norway, Musk said his attention was currently focused on his SpaceX Starship spacecraft and self-driving Tesla electric cars.

"The two technologies I am focused on, trying to ideally get done before the end of the year, are getting our Starship into orbit ... and then having Tesla cars to be able to do self-driving.

"Have self-driving in wide release at least in the U.S., and ... potentially in Europe, depending on regulatory approval," Musk told the audience.

OIL AND GAS NEEDED

Earlier, Musk said the world must continue to extract oil and gas in order to sustain civilisation, while also developing sustainable sources of energy.

"Realistically I think we need to use oil and gas in the short term, because otherwise civilisation will crumble," Musk told reporters on the sidelines of the conference.

Asked if Norway should continue to drill for oil and gas, Musk said: "I think some additional exploration is warranted at this time."

"One of the biggest challenges the world has ever faced is the transition to sustainable energy and to a sustainable economy," he said. "That will take some decades to complete."

He said offshore wind power generation in the North Sea, combined with stationary battery packs, could become a key source of energy. "It could provide a strong, sustainable energy source in winter," he said.

(Additional reporting by Terje Solsvik, editing by Gwladys Fouche, Jan Harvey and Louise Heavens)