Authorization

VW pays €1bn fine in Germany to end 'dieselgate' criminal charges in Europe

Volkswagen has agreed to pay a €1bn (?880m) fine in Germany, saying the penalty means it “accepts responsibility” for the diesel emissions scandal which sent the company into crisis.
The German car maker announced the fine on Wednesday evening, saying it had agreed the “administrative penalty” after an investigation by the public prosecutor in Braunschweig, the city close to the company’s Wolfsburg headquarters.
VW said that the probe found that “monitoring duties had been breached in the powertrain development department in the context of vehicle tests”.
This means that the company admits that diesel cars were fitted with so-called “defeat devices” which worked out when they were having their emissions levels tested.
When the devices realised this, they turned on full pollution controls which were not in use during normal driving conditions, meaning that cars on the road pumped out up to 40 times the allowed amount of pollution.  
VW pays €1bn fine in Germany to end 'dieselgate' criminal charges in Europe

Admitting that 11m cars were caught up in  dieselgate caused huge damage to the VW brand
The car maker added that the German prosecutor had ruled that 10.7m vehicles with “impermissible software” were sold worldwide from mid-2007 until 2015.
In a statement, VW said it “accepted the fine and will not lodge an appeal against it".
"By doing this, Volkswagen admits its responsibility for the diesel crisis and considers this as a further major step towards the latter being overcome.”
The fine consists of the maximum €5m penalty that could be imposed along with a further €995m for what it described as the “disgorgement of economic benefits”.
VW said that accepting the penalty means “active regulatory offence proceedings conducted against [the company] will be finally terminated”.
The company added: “Volkswagen assumes that such termination of the proceedings will also have significant positive effects on further active administrative proceedings in Europe against the Volkswagen.”
While the payment is likely to end criminal prosecutions against VW in Europe, it will not slow the growing number of civil claims against the company by motorists with affected cars and shareholders in the company.
VW has paid out $25bn (?19bn) in fines and compensation in the US – where the diesel scandal first emerged in 2015, and which sent VW shares into freefall – to settle criminal charges against the company and compensate almost 1m affected drivers in America.
Q&A | Volkswagen’s “dieselgate” emissions scandal
However, the car maker has offered no similar payouts to motorists in other countries and class action legal cases are progressing as consumers try to land a similar deal.
Arndt Ellinghorst, an analyst at Evercore ISI, said the settlement in Germany “most likely brings all European criminal investigations to an end”.
He added: “It doesn't relate to remaining civil claims. VW's lawyers do not believe that admitting guilt regarding the criminal investigations will change the likelihood to fight back against civil or shareholder claims. VW have admitted to a failure in process and control, the focus of the criminal investigation, and not anything more serious.”
Evercore calculates that while paying out €1bn will be “painful” for VW, it is not a material number for the car making giant and is likely to be positive for the business as it put a number on a previously unquantifiable legal risk.
See also:
Leave a comment
News
  • Latest
  • Read
  • Commented
Calendar Content
«    Июнь 2018    »
ПнВтСрЧтПтСбВс
 123
45678910
11121314151617
18192021222324
252627282930