Germany has complied with court ruling on "VW Law" -EU court adviser

LUXEMBOURG Wed May 29, 2013 4:05am EDT

LUXEMBOURG May 29 (Reuters) - Germany has complied with a court ruling over a law dating back to 1960 that gives the state of Lower Saxony veto rights over carmaker Volkswagen , an adviser to Europe's highest court said on Wednesday.

Advocate General Nils Wahl said in a written opinion on the case that the European Court of Justice should reject the Commission's argument that Germany be fined for infringing EU laws in the dispute.

Wahl agreed with Germany that it had complied with the terms of a 2007 ruling and had made the required legal changes.

ECJ judges are expected to rule on the case in the next few months. Wahl's opinion is not binding, though the judges follow such recommendations in a majority of cases.

Wahl said that if the judges did find that Germany had not complied with the 2007 court ruling, the fines should be substantially lower than those demanded by the Commission.

The dispute centres on the "VW Law", which dates back to the company's privatisation in 1960 and long served as a deterrent to hostile takeovers. It handed Lower Saxony, the carmaker's home state, an implicit blocking minority. (Via Brussels newsroom; editing by Rex Merrifield)