Exhaust emissions scandal: maas ventures model lawsuits

Federal Justice Minister Heiko Maas (SPD) has accused the CDU/CSU of a zigzag course in consumer protection. Maas told the dpa, a model declaratory action, in which several consumers can participate jointly, "could already be open to car buyers in Germany if CDU. With this form of action, consumers can join together to enforce their rights without a high cost risk – especially against large corporations. This form of action exists in the USA.

A corresponding proposal from him for such a class action has been on the table for a long time. Especially the Ministry of Transport of Alexander Dobrindt (CSU) has so far prevented the introduction, criticized Maas, who is also responsible for consumer protection. "It is more than bizarre when the CDU and CSU first block effective measures for more consumer protection for months and now, two days before the diesel summit, suddenly mutate into supposed consumer protectors in the person of the Bavarian Minister President (Horst Seehofer)."CSU leader Seehofer had spoken out in the ZDF in view of the diesel scandal open to the possibility of class action suits.

According to a report by the Image (Edition of 31. July 2017), the Federal Motor Transport Authority is said to have spared investigation reports on the emissions scandal at the behest of the auto industry. The paper refers to correspondence between the office and the manufacturers. According to the report, the subcommittee of the Ministry of Transport had already established more than a year ago that Porsche was working with defeat devices for its diesel engines, but had qualified this in the final report.

This Wednesday (2. August 2017), the German government and the auto industry plan to meet for a "diesel summit" to discuss the necessary consequences of the emissions scandal and the suspicion of a cartel among manufacturers. Federal Transport Minister Alexander Dobrindt (CSU) appealed in the Bild am Sonntag to the "damned responsibility" of manufacturers and called on them to "restore confidence and rectify the mistakes that have been made.". SPD Secretary General Hubertus Heil told the Passauer Neue Presse (ie of 31. July 2017): "Now the onus is on the corporations in particular to clean up the damage that has been done." He accused Dobrindt of being "hopelessly out of his depth". He failed to clarify the situation, to protect consumers and to give employees in the automotive industry a clear perspective.

Anton Hofreiter, head of the Grunen parliamentary group, accused the federal government in the Nordwest-Zeitung that for years it had erected a protective fence around diesel and gasoline engines. "This crisis has been avoidable."From the point of view of the Grunen top candidate Katrin Goring-Eckardt the state must prescribe a fixed date for the end of combustion engines to the car manufacturers. "There needs to be a clear regulatory framework, otherwise nothing will happen," she told the World (Ie of 31. July 2017). According to a report in the Mitteldeutsche Zeitung newspaper In a "Future Plan for Emission-Free Cars," the Green leadership is calling for, among other things, a time-limited conversion premium for older Euro 5 diesel vehicles, to be paid when "emission-free cars" are purchased. The costs of retrofitting diesel cars, on the other hand, are to be borne entirely by the manufacturers.

EU Commissioner Gunther Oettinger rejected a fixed ban date for the entire European Union. "A uniform EU phase-out date for the internal combustion engine at this point would be clearly premature and wrong," he told the Rheinische Post (ie of 31. July 2017).

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