German bosses urge govt to stop EU proposal on connected cars

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - The bosses of BMW and Deutsche Telekom have urged the German government to take action to block a European Commission proposal that would set a Wi-Fi-based standard for connected cars. In a letter, BMW CEO Harald Krueger and Telekom's Tim Hoettges warned that ruling out an alternative approach based on 5G mobile networks would leave Europe lagging rivals like China when it comes to the future of mobility

Reuters April 16, 2019 00:06:05 IST
German bosses urge govt to stop EU proposal on connected cars

German bosses urge govt to stop EU proposal on connected cars

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - The bosses of BMW and Deutsche Telekom have urged the German government to take action to block a European Commission proposal that would set a Wi-Fi-based standard for connected cars.

In a letter, BMW CEO Harald Krueger and Telekom's Tim Hoettges warned that ruling out an alternative approach based on 5G mobile networks would leave Europe lagging rivals like China when it comes to the future of mobility.

"We are convinced that mandating Wi-Fi technology will cause significant delay to the European rollout of car-to-car and car-to-infrastructure communication," the CEOs said in the letter to Transport Minister Andreas Scheuer, a copy of which was seen by Reuters.

Asked for comment, the German Transport Ministry said it was reviewing reservations raised by legal advisers to the European Council - the intergovernmental part of the EU decision process - after a working group meeting on April 5.

These would have to be examined before the government takes a final position on the issue, the ministry said.

The EU executive is seeking to set benchmarks for internet-connected cars, a market for carmakers, telecoms operators and equipment makers expected to be worth billions of euros a year.

The Commission's preference for the Wi-Fi-based ITS-G5 standard would give Volkswagen and Renault an edge over BMW, Daimler, Ford and PSA Group which endorse the rival 5G standard called C-V2X.

Advocates of C-V2X, which could for example enable cars to 'talk' directly to each other to avoid colliding, say the technology works on existing 4G LTE networks and would be enhanced by the rollout of next-generation 5G services.

"C-V2X is a game-changer for safety," an alliance of groups representing the European information technology and automotive industries said in a separate statement on Monday.

A key committee of EU lawmakers rejected the Commission's proposal last week. The European parliament will vote this Wednesday in a plenary session in which a simple majority would be needed to block it.

The European Council also has a say in the issue and would also need a blocking majority to derail the proposal, say officials in Brussels.

(Reporting by Douglas Busvine and Foo-Yun Chee; editing by Emelia Sithole-Matarise and David Evans)

This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.

Updated Date:

TAGS:

also read

France, Germany to agree to NATO role against Islamic State - sources
| Reuters
World

France, Germany to agree to NATO role against Islamic State - sources | Reuters

By Robin Emmott and John Irish | BRUSSELS/PARIS BRUSSELS/PARIS France and Germany will agree to a U.S. plan for NATO to take a bigger role in the fight against Islamic militants at a meeting with President Donald Trump on Thursday, but insist the move is purely symbolic, four senior European diplomats said.The decision to allow the North Atlantic Treaty Organization to join the coalition against Islamic State in Syria and Iraq follows weeks of pressure on the two allies, who are wary of NATO confronting Russia in Syria and of alienating Arab countries who see NATO as pushing a pro-Western agenda."NATO as an institution will join the coalition," said one senior diplomat involved in the discussions. "The question is whether this just a symbolic gesture to the United States

China's Xi says navy should become world class
| Reuters
World

China's Xi says navy should become world class | Reuters

BEIJING Chinese President Xi Jinping on Wednesday called for greater efforts to make the country's navy a world class one, strong in operations on, below and above the surface, as it steps up its ability to project power far from its shores.China's navy has taken an increasingly prominent role in recent months, with a rising star admiral taking command, its first aircraft carrier sailing around self-ruled Taiwan and a new aircraft carrier launched last month.With President Donald Trump promising a US shipbuilding spree and unnerving Beijing with his unpredictable approach on hot button issues including Taiwan and the South and East China Seas, China is pushing to narrow the gap with the U.S. Navy.Inspecting navy headquarters, Xi said the navy should "aim for the top ranks in the world", the Defence Ministry said in a statement about his visit."Building a strong and modern navy is an important mark of a top ranking global military," the ministry paraphrased Xi as saying.