By Ahmed Amer and Basma Tharwat
The Consumer Protection Agency (CPA) has begun tightening testing procedures for Volkswagen cars, in coordination with the Ministry of Environment, to ensure that the diesel cars conform to emissions standards.
In a scandal that has shaken the giant automotive company, Volkswagen confirmed the validity of environmental reports about manipulating the emissions test on its diesel cars.
Chairman of the CPA Atef Yacoub said the agency began coordinating with Ministry of Environment to test Volkswagen cars while licensing them and testing the claims regarding hazardous emissions. The CPA compared the emissions from the tests with the requirements placed by the ministry for cars locally.
Yacoub added that the agency has not received any complaints recently for Volkswagen cars in Egypt, noting that the agency will take the necessary legal procedures needed to avoid violations in the Volkswagen cars if it receives complaints from consumers.
On the other hand, the rigged emission tests could see Volkswagen facing fines of up to $18bn, which exceeds its operating profit from last year. German Deputy Finance Minister Jens Spahn previously said the Volkswagen crisis may harm the biggest economy in Europe.
Medhat Ismail, Sales and Marketing Manager at the Egyptian Automotive & Trading Co. (EATC), the agent for Volkswagen and Audi in Egypt, said that the international crisis facing Volkswagen will not affect the local market, explaining that the problem lies with the tests for the emission rates and percentages in the diesel cars, which the local market does not rely on.
He added, in a statement to Daily News Egypt, that the cars in the local market rely on petrol, and are unrelated to the crisis resulting from the emission tests. Ismail added that there is no concern over the emission rates affecting the environment in Egypt. Ismail said he believes it is unlikely that the crisis will affect the company’s sales in the local market, expecting the effect to be minor and unnoticeable.
Germany has given Volkswagen until 7 October to present a plan for reducing the emissions in accordance with legislation in Germany. Meanwhile, analysts have warned that the crisis may develop and threaten the largest economy in Europe, as Volkswagen is the largest automotive company in Germany.