December 1, 2015 / 6:14 PM / 2 years ago

Porsche, Piech families committed to Volkswagen and Wolfsburg

BERLIN (Reuters) - The Porsche-Piech family clan, which control a majority of the voting rights in Volkswagen (VOWG_p.DE), is convinced the German automaker and its hometown of Wolfsburg can overcome the emissions scandal, the Porsche chairman said on Tuesday.

A Volkswagen company logo adorns the VW factory in Wolfsburg, Germany November 20, 2015. REUTERS/Ina Fassbender

Wolfgang Porsche, chairman of Porsche Automobil Holding SE (PSHG_p.DE) and a Volkswagen board member, was speaking after an annual pre-Christmas meeting between city officials and Volkswagen executives and board members.

“I am firmly convinced that the city of Wolfsburg together with Volkswagen will master the situation and gain further strength,” Porsche said in a statement issued by the city.

“The Porsche and Piech families stand behind Volkswagen and Wolfsburg as its headquarters.”

Porsche SE, a publicly traded holding company that owns 52.2 percent of VW ordinary shares, is the biggest shareholder in VW.

VW has set aside 6.7 billion euros ($7.12 billion) to help cover the costs of recalling vehicles with rigged diesel emissions and another 2 billion for compensation payments related to its manipulations of carbon dioxide emission levels.

A town of around 125,000 people, Wolfsburg owes its very existence to Europe’s largest automaker and about half the town’s workers have a job directly linked to the company.

Wolfsburg mayor Klaus Mohrs said he hoped the city could work on a strategy to promote electric cars with Volkswagen to create a model town and “pave the way for a new era of mobility.”

Volkswagen Chief Executive Matthias Muellersaid the emissions issue was a catalyst for change.

“We have to reorientate ourselves to stay relevant in the future. For Volkswagen, but also for Wolfsburg, I am confident that this can succeed and will succeed,” he said.

Reporting by Emma Thomasson; editing by Susan Thomas

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