VDA President Hildegard Müller: Battle against corona must be coordinated across the EU and Germany

    Berlin, March 12, 2020

    Unilateral border closures by the Member States jeopardize goods transport and supplies to the population. The health authorities across Germany must take a unified approach. The comprehensive assistance measures announced by the German Government should be implemented rapidly.

    The German Association of the Automotive Industry (VDA) regards the extensive loan pledges given by the German Government, the planned tax measures and the relaxation of conditions for short-term working as having the potential to significantly alleviate the massive impact of the coronavirus crisis on the German economy.

    “These are very far-reaching and major measures that the Federal Government has passed. However, the specific details must now follow and they have to be implemented by the financial authorities in line with the resolutions,” said VDA President Hildegard Müller.

    Right now it is important that the crisis be tackled with closer cooperation between the EU Member States, flanked by the national government, the federal states and the municipalities in Germany. The challenges arising from this pandemic are global and therefore demand coordinated action, at least across Europe.

    “Unilateral border closures are not going to help. Corona does not stop at national borders. Anyone who seals them off in an uncoordinated manner is jeopardizing international goods traffic and thus supplies to the population,” Hildegard Müller explained. If controls at the border crossings were intensified, she added, priority would have to be given to freight transport.

    The VDA president appealed to the Federal Government, the German states and the municipalities to reinforce the coordination between the health authorities in the current critical situation: “It is right for the authorities to decide in their own area how to react to the specific regional impacts of the coronavirus. But the yardsticks for such decisions should be transparent and unified across the country, so that the people and businesses affected have planning security.”