• Oct 26th 2009 at 7:26AM
  • 8
The EU's Directorate-General for Competition (EUDGC) is looking at the Opel deal that should have been concluded already, and is asking questions of Germany and GM. Principally it is trying to resolve the issue of state aid; it was reported before that if Opel was purchased by Magna then the German government would provide financial assistance. However, if the bidder GM is said to have preferred, Belgian investment fund RHJ, won, then there would be no money coming from the German authorities.

The EUDGC wants to ensure that Magna was chosen for sound business reasons that had nothing to do with politics. It also wants to make sure that money promised to Magna was also clearly made available to other bidders. Lead GM negotiator John Smith said "The German Government was asked by DG Competition to communicate its position on financing availability to GM and the Opel Trust Board." And Germany's Economic Minister has asked GM to also tell the EU that it chose Magna based on reason and logic.

Meanwhile, GM continues to work with Magna on finalizing issues relating to the sale. No matter what happens with the EU, GM has to work with Magna right now because Magna is making decisions for Opel, such as whether to close down an Opel plant in Zaragoza, Spain. The EUDGC will want to complete its investigation in a timely manner, since having to unwind -- or redo -- what has taken six painful months to put together would be a massive blow to all involved.

[Source: GM Fastlane Blog via Automotive News - Sub. Req.]

I'm reporting this comment as:

Reported comments and users are reviewed by Autoblog staff 24 hours a day, seven days a week to determine whether they violate Community Guideline. Accounts are penalized for Community Guidelines violations and serious or repeated violations can lead to account termination.

    • 1 Second Ago
      • 5 Years Ago
      I can't even read the article... all I can think about is how much better the Ampera looks than the Volt
      • 5 Years Ago
      Now THAT is what the volt should look like. Opel's rendition is far more unique and aggressive. It looks like you are driving a revolutionary car (from the front at least). The Volt on the other hand will look old before it ever hits the streets.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Of course it's about politics. German Chancellor Angela Merkel pushed the deal to get the unions to back her reelection bid, and it worked. I still feel this was not the best deal for Opel, and that the EU should have stepped in before the transaction was finalized.

      "Next up for GM - how to save their Korean division!!"

      Daewoo, for the most part, is safe. Sales may be weak in Korea, but the cars are selling quite well elsewhere in the world under the Chevrolet nameplate. If home market sales are the question, then the answer is simple-offer more products that can compete equally with Hyundai and Kia.
      • 5 Years Ago
      EU Commission = not famous for its patience!

      Using Opel as a political move! Long-term not very clever within Europe.

      • 5 Years Ago
      Kill this deal! GM needs to hold on to OPEL at all costs.

      Hopefully there is a way to keep Magna involved-I'm sure GM could use their billion dollars!

      As a current Astra driver I know the value of the OPEL products to the GM line. I'm actually planning on getting the Insignia/Regal when and now I guess if they are still coming to North America.

      Next up for GM - how to save their Korean division!!
        • 5 Years Ago
        funny, magna is actually counting on the billions from the german goverment to save themselves... nobody has billions lying around these days
      • 5 Years Ago
      That Opel reminds me of the band KISS.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Yes it will likely turn out to be better in the long run if GM keeps Opel.