Press Releases

Statement delivered by VDA President Matthias Wissmann on the coalition agreement

Berlin, 07 February 2018

Germany needs reliable and stable political leaders that can take action especially in these times of unrest around the world. We therefore welcome the fact that an agreement has been reached, although we take a very critical view of parts of the proposed government program. For example, the coalition agreement risks paying too much attention to redistribution and too little to working for our prosperity. The new Government – if and when it is formed – will have to keep that in mind.

The project of strengthening Europe describes an important goal. The task will be to continue developing the European Union in a smart way without it turning into a transfer union. We need the commitment announced to free trade in order to secure German production sites against protectionism worldwide. This is because the automotive industry now builds almost twice as many German cars abroad as it does at home – until now with a large workforce employed in Germany. We are in favor of intensifying relations with the US. We welcome the fact that the publicly stated support for international action on climate is accompanied by a forward-looking industrial policy. This must also be manifested in the actual work of the Government, because a healthy balance between industrial and economic policy on the one hand, and environmental and social policy on the other, promotes Germany’s competitiveness and its production capacity. It is necessary to have a smart site policy that effectively encourages companies to make innovations and investments. It is not enough merely to express support for a tax and levy system that is competitive worldwide.

It is right that the coalition agreement should follow the basic principle of welcoming all possible technology options, because quotas or bans on certain technologies lead to a dead-end for economic, social and climate policy. Also positive with a view to the future is the fact that the necessary investment in the infrastructure and key technologies such as electric mobility and automated and networked driving should be put at the top of the agenda in the coming parliamentary session. We agree with the coalition parties that banning diesel vehicles from entering cities should definitely be avoided.

Eckehart Rotter
Eckehart Rotter Head of Department Press

Tel: +49 30 897842-120 Fax: +49 30 897842-603
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