Fleet News

Volkswagen chief to head European makers' group

THE European Automobile Manufacturers' Association (ACEA) has appointed Volkswagen board of management chairman Bernd Pischetsrieder as its president for this year.

Following the association's tradition of rotating presidencies, Pischetsrieder will succeed Renault chairman and chief executive officer Louis Schweitzer.

'It is a pleasure and an honour to be the next ACEA president,' Pischetsrieder said. 'Next year will be a cornerstone in the history of the European Union thanks to the accession of 10 new member states, the completion of the reform process of the EU institutions and the incumbency of a new Parliament and a new Commission.

'I am hopeful that 2004 will also be marked by the improvement of the economic environment and that Europe will enter again into a period of stable growth. With regard to the automotive sector, we need both to build up on the many achievements made so far in key societal areas, such as environment protection and road safety, and to preserve the competitiveness and the innovative standing of our industry.'

Pischetsrieder said progress has to be made towards the completion of the internal market, the drafting of a balanced regulatory framework and a level playing field with competitors outside Europe.

He added: 'It is essential to create a context where the European automotive industry can continue to develop, to provide sustainable mobility, and to fulfill its societal responsibilities, thus contributing to the health and wealth of Europe.'

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