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Does Brussels have the tools to take on VW?

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Does Brussels have the tools to take on VW?

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Brussels is finally bearing some teeth over the Volkswagen emissions scandal.

European Consumer Commissioner Vera Jourova on Monday described so-called ‘Dieselgate’ as a pan-European challenge and said that the Commission is assessing whether there have been breaches of two sets of rules that apply across the bloc.

Also on Monday, the Commission announced that it will meet consumer groups on Thursday to ensure that enough is being done to seek compensation for drivers affected by VW’s cheating of diesel emissions tests.

Across Europe, VW owners affected by ‘Dieselgate have been looking longingly towards the US, where American customers have been receiving compensation of up to 10 thousand dollars.

Ursula Pachl, deputy director of the European Consumer Organisation (BEUC): “What is really lacking in Europe – and what we have in the US, and this one of the reasons why in the US consumers got compensated and very well so – is the fact that in Europe we don’t have collective redress procedures, which means that consumers can join, form a group and go against the companies who infringe the law.”

Across Europe, VW owners affected by so-called “Dieselgate” have been looking longingly towards the US, where American customers have been receiving compensation of up to 10 thousand dollars.

The second Commission of Jose Manuel Barroso (2010-2014) “could have acted and there were long discussions about producing a law that would allow collective redress exactly for this type of situation,” Pachl says.

“And now it’s really the last chance for the Commission to come forward with such an instrument.”

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