China bends electric car quotas to accommodate Germany - report

BERLIN, June 2 (Reuters) - China has agreed to delay and soften planned electric vehicle quotas in response to complaints from German carmakers who said the rules would discriminate against them in their largest market, Handelsblatt reported on Friday.

Beijing planned to require that 8 percent of all vehicles sold by carmakers from January 2018 should be hybrid or electric, a deadline that German manufacturers cannot hit.

After a meeting with Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel in Berlin on Thursday, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang said a “solution” had been found, without giving details.

Maintaining and extending its current strong position in China is crucial for Germany’s auto industry, led by Volkswagen , Daimler and BMW, and its broader economy.

Handelsblatt, citing industry sources, said China had agreed to delay the introduction of the rule by a year and allow firms to make up for inadequate electric sales volumes later. Measures were also being investigated to allow German firms to limit their transfer of technology to China, Handelsblatt said. (Reporting by Thomas Escritt; editing by Alexander Smith)