France Urges Germany to Stop Blocking Ban on Combustion Cars by 2035
France has called on Germany to lift its opposition to a proposed ban on the sale of combustion engine vehicles from 2035 in the European Union (EU). The call came from the French Minister of European Affairs, Catherine Colonna, ahead of a meeting with ministers and secretaries of European Affairs of the Twenty-seven. The summit of heads of state and government of the EU is taking place this week, where leaders will discuss issues ranging from energy policies to supporting Ukraine. Still, the end of combustion cars has emerged as an issue that pits France against Germany.
Disagreements between Coalition Partners Over Clean Synthetic Fuel
Last June, Germany accepted a ban on selling cars that emit CO2 from 2035, but there were political discrepancies within the German government. The issue has divided the Greens and Liberals in Germany, who are coalition partners in the tripartite government headed by the Social Democrat Olaf Scholz. In March, Germany delayed voting on the ban in the Council of the EU, arguing that new clauses were necessary to protect vehicles with combustion engines that use synthetic fuels. Germany sponsored a meeting in Strasbourg with transport ministers from other countries in support of their stance.
France Calls for Agreement Ahead of Summit
Colonna’s call for Germany to support the ban was made ahead of the EU summit. She emphasized the importance of sticking to the agreement made last year that there would be no combustion engine vehicles by 2035. Germany’s opposition to the ban could undermine the EU’s efforts to tackle the climate crisis. France hopes that all EU members will agree to the ban, and that their leaders will discuss the issue in the summit. A positive outcome would benefit the environment and the automotive industry, as it would give manufacturers a clear deadline to switch to electric vehicles.