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European trade bodies split over location clause as ACEA lobbies for delay

A vote in support of the block exemption's September 2005 end to dealer territory restrictions by a meeting of the German ZDK dealers federation this month followed lobbying to delay the change both from ACEA and the European motor trade trade federation CECRA.

Some member organisations within CECRA have sided with the ACEA in defence of their small- and medium-sized dealer members, but the RMI is not among them. Franchised dealer director Alan Pulham says the RMI expects the ending of territories could potentially benefit medium-sized dealers, while it expects the larger groups to seek growth by acquisition rather than opening new outlets in fellow dealers' formerly exclusive territories.

The RMI is arguing within CECRA for the September 2005 abolition of dealer territory limits to be maintained intact.

The right of franchised dealers to open sales outlets across the EU is intended to harmonise new car prices across EU member states; the ACEA pronounced its fierce opposition to the change in a position paper on the B.E.R. it published last year, but has not issued public pronouncements on further efforts to amend the B.E.R.

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