Communication from the Automobile Industry Association on recent developments in the approval of the CO2 regulation for passenger cars and Germany’s requirement for carbon neutral fuels

14/3/2023 |Articles are machine translated

Ilustrative picture | Photo: ŠKODA AUTO

A communication from the Association of the Automotive Industry on the current developments in the approval of the CO2 regulation for passenger vehicles and Germany’s requirement for carbon neutral fuels, which provides a description of the current situation, the legal status, possible “what next” scenarios and the position of the Czech car industry.

Description of the situation
  • this is a proposal for a regulation on CO2 targets for passenger cars (end of sales of petrol/diesel vehicles in 2035);
  • the validity of the text was only due to be formally confirmed in the Council on 7 March (the European Parliament had already approved the agreed text on 14 February), but at the moment the confirmation of the Council’s approval has been postponed indefinitely;
  • the postponement of approval is due to Germany’s request for additional safeguards to allow the sale of carbon neutral passenger cars[1] beyond the 2035 ban on petrol/diesel vehicles;
  • other EU countries, including the Czech Republic, are now informally joining this demand.
Legal status and possible “what next” scenarios?
  • The situation where a proposal that has already been confirmed by all the authorities concerned in the trilogues is at risk of being formally disapproved is exceptional in terms of EU legislative procedures;
  • the postponement of the proposal in the Council does not, however, mean that the proposal will be abandoned;
  • it is, however, necessary for the proposal to move forward:
    1. Germany and the Commission find an agreement on binding guarantees outside the scope of the changes in the current legal text (for example, with reference to the revision in 2026 embedded in the text), then the proposal can enter into force in the short term;
    2. the Council (i.e. between Member States) and the Commission agree on a new text of the proposal (which will not be easy and will undoubtedly take longer). This formally means a move to a so-called “2nd reading” and thus the need to find agreement also with the European Parliament, which would have to confirm the new text.
The position of the Czech Automotive Industry
  • the Czech car industry has long supported a technology-neutral approach to reducing emissions in road transport, i.e. a range of drive solutions that meet customer requirements;
  • the final European solution should therefore not limit this range to one solution only, but on the contrary use all pathways that will lead to a real reduction of CO2 emissions in transport, which is important both for maintaining affordable and sustainable mobility in Europe and for maintaining European competitiveness and Czech car industry in global competition;
  • this applies equally to the currently approved CO2 targets for passenger vehicles, as well as to the targets for trucks and buses currently under discussion;
  • given the need for legal certainty to ensure planning, development and production, we strongly urge the representatives of States and European institutions to reach a technology-neutral final agreement on CO2 targets for vehicles as soon as possible;
  • at the same time, we strongly warn of the negative impact that any delay or challenge to the CO2 reduction targets could have on the negotiation of further regulations, such as the Euro 7/VII proposal, which in its current form, we continue to see as a critical threat to maintaining the performance of the sector, jobs and a diverse range of vehicle models to meet customer demands.

[1] Carbon neutral fuels is a broader term that encompasses both synthetic fuels, which are produced by the chemical hydrogenation of carbon dioxide, and biofuels, which are produced through natural CO2-consuming processes such as photosynthesis.


M.A. Marco Boggian
M.A. Marco Boggian

Regulatory Affairs Manager

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