‘Spiegel’: Porsche board member offered Putin help in rebuilding car industry

Siegfried Wolf, a Porsche supervisory board member, in a letter to Vladimir Putin, made available to enable with the generation of cars and trucks in Russia. He supplied the head of the Kremlin with a deal with Volkswagen – for 60 billion rubles (about EUR 800 million) , Wolf would be equipped to “save the Russian automotive industry” and make sure the creation of at minimum 270,000 cars and trucks per calendar year in Russia, as claimed by the portal of the day by day “Spiegel”, which statements to access Wolf’s letter.

Wolf presented the approach to Putin in January, starting his three-page letter with the words “Pricey Vladimir Vladimirovich!” This was just about a year right after Putin attacked Ukraine.

Wolf, pointing to the “difficult conditions” now prevailing in Russia, proposed resuming the output of substantial-quality autos and introduced “a option to this problem.” For his venture, he preferred to use two crops the place production was stopped in the spring of 2022. One particular of them is a plant in the vicinity of Moscow, owned by German Volkswagen.

As Wolf certain in the letter, “a sizeable agreement with Volkswagen’s top management” experienced previously been reached. The conclusion was to be “finally approved by the Group’s supervisory board” by March at the newest.

The Austrian Siegfried Wolf sits on the supervisory boards of, amid some others, German Porsche, which belongs to just one concern with each other with VW. Few businessmen from the German-speaking environment have these kinds of good contacts in Russia, with regional bosses and oligarchs, and with President Vladimir Putin, writes Spiegel. For several yrs, Wolf held managerial positions in the empire of oligarch Oleg Deripaska, like on the board of directors of the Russian GAZ Team. The former proprietor of GAZ, Deripaska, has been on U.S. and EU sanctions lists given that 2018.

Porsche enlargement strategies

Wolf, asked by “Spiegel” in March for a remark, confident that he “strongly condemns the present-day Russian-Ukrainian war” and “has in no way been involved in armaments production”, “does not make money on it in any way” and “withdrew from all past operational functions in Russia”. He also stressed that he “does not cooperate in any way with men and women or organizations topic to global sanctions.”

Even so, according to the newspaper Wolf’s letter to Putin “raises significant uncertainties.” Wolf implies there that Putin need to resurrect the “legendary Russian brand name Volga”. The creation of the Volga was terminated by the GAZ group in 2010. Now the Austrian would like to use the manufacturing unit facilities and know-how of the VW Team, which, just after the get started of the war, suspended generation at its very own plant in Kaluga and withdrew from manufacturing cooperation with GAZ in Nizhny Novgorod.

Wolf’s approach was to restart auto output at two plants (in Kaluga and Nizhny Novgorod) from the 2nd fifty percent of 2023. As Wolf discussed in his letter to Putin, the automobiles “should have a Russian layout and be entirely redesigned from the outside to convey out the traits of the legendary Volga and Pobeda designs,” describes Spiegel.

Volkswagen has clearly distanced itself from Wolf’s options, with the company’s administration stating it has “no knowledge” of his letter “and its annoying content”.

As “Spiegel” located out, Putin would be inclined to support Wolf’s system, “given the condition in the automotive field.”

For the head of the Kremlin, any assistance to rebuild the economy is really worth its weight in gold. General public pressure and a wide bundle of Western sanctions led to a mass exodus of worldwide carmakers from Russia. Manufacturers such as Mercedes-Benz, Nissan and Renault withdrew from the Russian marketplace.

In 2022, the variety of recently manufactured and registered autos fell by almost 60{1668a97e7bfe6d80c144078b89af180f360665b4ea188e6054b2f93f7302966b}. “Everything is missing: parts and experienced personnel, and several crops have been idle for months,” concludes “Spiegel”.


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