The EU states will not make a final decision next Tuesday on the blanket ban on new cars with combustion engines from 2035, as originally planned. This was announced by a spokesman for the responsible Swedish EU Council Presidency on Friday in Brussels.
Shortly before, Federal Transport Minister Volker Wissing (FDP) said in Berlin that Germany cannot agree to the planned ban at the moment. Wissing reiterated the demand that the EU Commission must submit a proposal on how climate-neutral synthetic fuels can be used in combustion engines after 2035. The EU Commission must fulfill a corresponding commitment.
Without Germany's approval, the vote planned for Tuesday could have failed. Passing the law requires the approval of 15 out of 27 member states, which together must make up at least 65 percent of the total population of the EU. In addition to Germany, countries such as Italy, Poland and Bulgaria recently did not want to agree to the plans. The 65 percent hurdle would not be reached without Germany.
Wissing: Germany cannot agree
Actually, negotiators from the European Parliament and the EU states had already agreed in October that from 2035 only new cars may be sold in the EU that do not emit any greenhouse gases during operation. The pending vote of the EU states is the very last step in the legislative process and is actually a formality.
However, Wissing had already announced resistance to the project at the beginning of the week and threatened that Germany would not be able to agree. He justified this by saying that the EU Commission has not yet submitted a proposal on how only vehicles fueled with climate-neutral fuels such as e-fuels can be approved after 2035. This was part of the agreement in the Council of EU States in June 2022, with which the FDP could be persuaded to agree within the federal government.