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Informal meeting with EU ministers on the situation of GM


Publication date: 16 March 2009


The Vice-President of the European Commission G. Verheugen and his colleagues N. Kroes and V. Spidla will meet this afternoon at 5 pm in the premises of the BERLAYMONT building with ministers in charge of the automotive industry and with representatives of General Motors. They will discuss the situation of General Motors, in particular its European branch, bearing in mind the primary entrepreneurial responsibility in a social market economy.

The meeting is a follow up to last week's Competitiveness Council, where the situation of the European automotive industry has been discussed and where it was agreed that the situation of General Motors in Europe merits special attention of all Member States. The EU ministers had already in January committed to closely cooperate and to ensure a transparent and coherent approach when dealing with the crisis in the automotive sector.

The objective of the meeting is


  • To make sure that all Member States and the Commission are of the same level of information
  • To allow a direct and coordinated exchange of views with General Motors
  • To confirm that Member States will not take national measures without prior information and coordination with other involved countries and that the internal market has to be protected


General Motors will be represented by the Chief Operating Officer of GM, Detroit, Mr. Fritz Henderson and Mr. Carl Peter Forster, CEO of GM Europe, Zürich.

Following current information 10 countries (AT, BE, CZ, DE, HU, LU, PT, RO, SE, UK) will be represented at ministerial level.


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Debrief on the Informal meeting with EU ministers on the situation of GM on 13 March 2009


The Vice-President of the European Commission G. Verheugen and his colleagues N. Kroes and V. Spidla have met today with ministers in charge of the automotive industry and with representatives of General Motors. Twelve EU Member States (AT, BE, CZ, DE, ES, HU, LU, PL, PT, RO, SE, UK) were represented at ministerial level. Other Member States were represented at the level of high officials.

The meeting was divided in two parts. It started in restraint with an open discussion on the situation of General Motors, in particular its European branch. The meeting profited from the insights of the Chief Operating Officer of GM, Detroit, Mr. Fritz Henderson and Mr. Carl Peter Forster, CEO of GM Europe, Zürich. Without the representatives from GM, and in an enlarged meeting format the participants continued the discussion.

All participants welcomed the initiative of the Commission and reconfirmed the need for a coherent and coordinated political approach towards the European automotive industry, bearing in mind its primary entrepreneurial responsibility in a social market economy, as already agreed earlier this year. All participants welcomed the presence of representatives of General Motors, notably since GM is a major employer in the EU. They appreciated the information received and agreed to ensure that no national measures should be taken without prior information and coordination with other involved countries. The Commission participants reminded the need to fully respect EU rules, including state aid, and to protect the internal market, which was acknowledged. The objectives of today's meeting, which was open and constructive, have been fully achieved.


Source: Europa Press Room


 
 
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