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BMW calls rules

BMW GB managing director Jim O’Donnell has blasted the forthcoming FSA regulations as a “complete farce” that will add cost and complication to the insurance market and could force some repairers to close.

And he accused the Govern-ment of taking a pernicious approach to legislation that was giving competitive advance to companies in mainland Europe. “The FSA is the most damaging piece of legislation to hit our market – more than block exemption,” he says.

“The UK has embraced it and handed it over to the civil servants. As a piece of European legislation you’d have thought our European colleagues would have the same problems.

But in Ireland and France they have not heard a thing about it and in Germany they are doing nothing about it. The UK is drowning under the weight of unhelpful legislation and red tape.”

O’Donnell predicts the price of warranties could rise by 25% to cover Insurance Premium Tax, VAT and insurers’ margins. Describing the FSA regulations, introduced from January 15, 2005, as a “complete cock-up” he questioned whether the Financial Services Authority would now be able to determine who serviced consumers’ cars: “If a repairer is not covered by FSA they will not be able to repair a car under extended warranty even if they have qualified technicians.”

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