Our neighbouring country Poland no longer wants to be a buyer for motor vehicles that are discarded in Germany.
Poland is regarded as a real residual ramp when it comes to older cars. Our neighbour has imported around 900,000 used cars from abroad every year - preferably from the Federal Republic of Germany. But this should now come to an end, according to the Polish Minister for Development, Jadwiga Emilewicz: "We are considering a return to the regulation developed in the previous legislative period, which increases the excise tax on used cars". Conversely, these plans mean that if imports are stopped in the East, Germany's ecological balance would also suffer massively, because there could be a risk that Germany would "get stuck" on its old cars. The German government wants to prevent this horror scenario at all costs. Particularly explosive would be the introduction of an import tax, which would seriously threaten an entire branch of the Polish used car market, not only importers but also mechanics and dealers. It goes without saying that this tax would then also actively influence the German market, as experts urgently warn.
That German cars are older than the European average is nothing new. Studies by the CAR Institute in Duisburg, North Rhine-Westphalia, have shown that the German car fleet is at the bottom of the list in Western Europe. A categorical "no" to the flood of old cars would also mean that German consumers would automatically be faced with more environmental zones and driving bans if the air quality measurements were worse. Germany is virtually drowning in driving bans and packages of measures - will German car owners still face more reprisals?
Where the sudden change of heart in Poland comes from remains questionable. The Polish government has so far shown itself to be rather discreetly reticent on the subject of environmental protection and does not adhere to the Paris Convention of 2015 - some Polish members of the government are also clearly part of the "climate deniers" faction.
So wolf in sheep's clothing east of the Oder? At least that is what it looks like.