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Why Won’t Volkswagen Compensate European Defeat Device Victims?

March 30, 2016
Colson Hicks Eidson

Since the VW scandal broke, people have been up in arms trying to make sure Volkswagen pays for their deception, but new evidence is coming to light that VW might not be as willing to make amends as previously thought.

Why Won’t Volkswagen Compensate European Defeat Device Victims?

Elzbieta Bienkowska, the former deputy prime minister of Poland and current European commissioner of industry, has repeatedly urged Volkswagen to compensate its European consumers. However, VW CEO Matthias Muller and his company have refused to budge on the issue.

VW is giving U.S. owners affected by dieselgate a $500 prepaid Visa card as well as $500 in dealership credit, but the company refuses to give such compensations to European victims of the defeat device. The company says that past recall figures prove that the values of European vehicles aren’t affected by recalls, and the company claims that dieselgate has broken no EU environmental laws.

How Can Europe Hold VW Responsible?

As further justification for compensating Americans and not Europeans, the company also points out that United States also has stricter environmental laws and steeper fines. However, some European lawmakers are seeing this as a sign that it might be time to strengthen the EU’s environmental regulations. Several suggested policies would give the European commission the power to order recalls and fine any company that breaks the EU’s pollution rules.

These changes are expected in the most recent car-sale regulations overhaul, but some experts believe that countries with large automakers will interfere with the legislative process and delay any potential improvements to EU emissions policy.

Do you think Europe will change its pollution regulations? Do you think Volkswagen should also compensate Europeans? Will VW ever truly pay for deceiving the world? Let us know what you think on our Twitter and Facebook pages.