Fiat Chrysler shares hit by squabble with Germany over meeting

MILAN (Reuters) - Shares in Fiat Chrysler Automobiles fell on Friday after Germany’s transport minister criticized the car maker for not showing up at a meeting on emissions.

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Fiat Chrysler was due to attend a meeting in Germany on Thursday over possible emissions irregularities of its diesel vehicles but sent a lawyer’s letter cancelling the appointment.

Transport Minister Alexander Dobrindt said this was “uncooperative behavior” and “completely incomprehensible”.

Fiat is among several carmakers currently under scrutiny for car emission levels.

Traders said the stock would remain under pressure until there was more clarity about the scale of the problems.

But Italian Transport Minister Graziano Delrio said German authorities should contact Italian car regulators and not the company directly.

Delrio said he had sent a letter to Dobrindt, making clear that the two national emissions authorities should discuss Fiat vehicle emissions.

The minister said Fiat Chrysler was more than ready to send information regarding its emissions strategy to the competent authority.

Fiat Chrysler has previously said its cars meet European Union emissions standards. A Fiat spokesman on Friday confirmed this position.

At 1138 GMT, Fiat Chrysler shares were down 1.8 percent while the European auto sector was flat.

Reporting by Stephen Jewkes and Danilo Masoni; Editing by Ruth Pitchford