Merkel's Diesel Problem
Bloomberg Businessweek Middle East|November 16, 2018
Merkel's Diesel Problem

The German chancellor is facing a backlash against her long-standing ties to the auto industry.

Birgit Jennen, Karin Matussek, and Elisabeth Behrmann

With her support of the Paris climate accord and decision to shutter Germany’s nuclear power plants, Angela Merkel has earned a reputation abroad as the “climate chancellor.” But throughout her 13 years in office, Merkel has had a blind spot when it comes to the auto industry— which employs more than 800,000 people in her country—embracing German carmakers and continuing to champion diesel even after Volkswagen AG admitted three years ago to cheating on emissions tests. Merkel has long been more “car chancellor” than climate chancellor, says Jürgen Trittin, a former Green Party environment minister, and today her auto policies are “crashing into pieces.”


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November 16, 2018