Spitfire List Web site and blog of anti-fascist researcher and radio personality Dave Emory.

News & Supplemental  

Qatar, the Muslim Brotherhood and the Fischer/Tropsch Process

Dia­gram of the Fis­ch­er-Trop­sch process

COMMENT: Past pro­grams have dealt with the res­ur­rec­tion of the Fis­ch­er-Trop­sch process, devel­oped by I.G. Far­ben and the Third Reich to syn­the­size oil from coal, among oth­er fuels.

The Fis­ch­er-Trop­sch process is being uti­lized in Qatar to syn­the­size fuel from nat­ur­al gas. One of the many dark clouds on the hori­zon of the Mid­dle East con­cerns the grow­ing and piv­otal role Qatar is play­ing in the dynam­ics evolv­ing from the Arab Spring.

Awash with cash from its vast nat­ur­al gas and fos­sil fuel resources, Qatar is financ­ing Mus­lim Broth­er­hood-relat­ed activ­i­ties, includ­ing the Al-Jazeera net­work. Allied with the Axis in World War II, the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood is an Islam­ic fas­cist orga­ni­za­tion that has stayed true to its roots.

The rights for using Fis­ch­er-Trop­sch process are under the con­trol of the Bor­mann cap­i­tal net­work (the eco­nom­ic com­po­nent of a Third Reich gone under­ground) through the suc­ces­sor com­pa­nies of I.G. Far­ben and the Her­mann Schmitz trust. (See text excerpts below for detail on the Bor­mann net­work, I.G. Far­ben and the Schmitz trust.)

The cor­po­rate logo of I.G. Far­ben.

With Qatar sub­si­diz­ing Islam­ic fas­cism through the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood and gen­er­at­ing cap­i­tal through the appli­ca­tion of Nazi sci­ence, the pos­si­bil­i­ty of that small but pow­er­ful nation as an Under­ground Reich sub­sidiary should be seri­ous­ly con­sid­ered.

Par­en­thet­i­cal­ly, we note that the Sasol firm was found­ed in South Africa dur­ing the Apartheid era. Apartheid South Africa was a direct out­growth of the Third Reich.

In eval­u­at­ing the infor­ma­tion set forth here, it should be remem­bered that Qatar is deeply con­nect­ed to cor­po­rate Ger­many, as well as the Ger­man for­eign min­istry. Cor­po­rate Ger­many is dom­i­nat­ed by the Bor­mann cap­i­tal net­work. (See excerpt include below.)

Mar­tin Bor­mann: Nazi in Exile by Paul Man­ning; pp. 282–3.

EXCERPT:  . . . . Each of these three spin­offs from I.G. Far­ben today does more busi­ness indi­vid­u­ally than did Far­ben at its zenith, when its cor­po­rate struc­ture cov­ered 93 coun­tries. BASF and Bay­er indi­vid­u­ally boast world­wide sales of near­ly $10 bil­lion annu­ally, while Hoechst, now the world’s largest chem­i­cal com­pany, gen­er­ated $16.01 bil­lion in world­wide sales in 1980. Each does more busi­ness than E.I. du Pont de Nemours, with sales of $9.4 bil­lion. . . . The Unit­ed States is, of course, the major mar­ket, one into which these Ger­man cor­po­ra­tions con­tinue to pour invest­ment mon­ey for both new cap­i­tal con­struc­tion and cor­po­rate takeovers. Togeth­er, these three multi­na­tion­als assure per­ma­nent pros­per­ity for the orig­i­nal 450 Far­ben stock­hold­ers, their banks, and the shad­owy share­hold­ers of the Bor­mann orga­ni­za­tion in South Amer­ica who guard and vote the Her­mann Schmitz trust fund through inter­me­di­aries at the annu­al meet­ings of BASF, Bay­er and Hoechst. . . .

Mar­tin Bor­mann: Nazi in Exile by Paul Man­ning; pp. 279–80.

EXCERPT: . . . . If there is any doubt in Europe who in the long run won the peace, there is none what­so­ever among the for­mer Ger­man lead­ers dwelling in South Amer­ica. It is a good bet that if Her­mann Schmitz were alive today, he would bear wit­ness as to who real­ly won. Schmitz died con­tented, hav­ing wit­nessed the resur­gence of I.G. Far­ben, albeit in altered cor­po­rate forms, a mon­ey machine that con­tin­ues to gen­er­ate prof­its for all the old I.G. share­hold­ers and enor­mous inter­na­tional pow­er for the Ger­man cadre direct­ing the work­ings of the suc­ces­sor firms. . . . He was the mas­ter manip­u­la­tor, the cor­po­rate and finan­cial wiz­ard, the magi­cian, who could make mon­ey appear and dis­ap­pear, and reap­pear again. His whole exis­tence was leg­erde­main, played out on the game­board of I.G. Far­ben and his beloved Ger­many. . . Their [Schmitz and Bor­mann] asso­ci­a­tion was close and trust­ing over the years, and it is the con­sid­ered opin­ion of those in their cir­cle that the wealth pos­sessed by Her­mann Schmitz was shift­ed to Switzer­land and South Amer­ica, and placed in trust with Bor­mann, the legal heir to Hitler. [Her­mann] Schmitz’s wealth—largely I.G. Far­ben bear­er bonds con­verted to the Big Three suc­ces­sor firms, shares in Stan­dard Oil of New Jer­sey (equal to those held by the Rock­e­fellers), as well as shares in the 750 cor­po­ra­tions he helped Bor­mann estab­lish dur­ing the last year of World War II—has increased in all seg­ments of the mod­ern indus­trial world. The Bor­mann orga­ni­za­tion in South Amer­ica uti­lizes the vot­ing pow­er of the Schmitz trust along with their own assets to guide the multi­na­tion­als they con­trol, as they keep steady the eco­nomic course of the Father­land. . .

“A Big, and Risky, Ener­gy Bet” by John M. Broder and Clif­ford Krauss; The New York Times; 12/18/2012.

EXCERPT: The com­pact assem­bly of tow­ers, tubes and tanks that make up the Oryx nat­ur­al gas pro­cess­ing plant is almost lost in a vast petro­chem­i­cal com­plex that ris­es here like a hazy mirage from a vast ocean of sand. But what is occur­ring at Oryx is a par­tic­u­lar kind of alche­my that has tan­ta­lized sci­en­tists for near­ly a cen­tu­ry with prospects of trans­form­ing the ener­gy land­scape. Sasol, a chem­i­cal and syn­thet­ic fuels com­pa­ny based in South Africa, is con­vert­ing nat­ur­al gas to diesel fuel using a vari­a­tion of a tech­nol­o­gy devel­oped by Ger­man sci­en­tists in the 1920s. Per­form­ing such chem­i­cal wiz­ardry is exceed­ing­ly cost­ly. But exec­u­tives at Sasol and a part­ner, Qatar’s state-owned oil com­pa­ny, are bet­ting that nat­ur­al gas, which is abun­dant here, will become the dom­i­nant glob­al fuel source over the next 50 years, oil will become scarcer and more expen­sive and glob­al demand for trans­port fuels will grow. Sasol exec­u­tives say the com­pa­ny believes so strong­ly in the promise of this tech­nol­o­gy that this month, it announced plans to spend up to $14 bil­lion to build the first gas-to-liq­uids plant in the Unit­ed States, in Louisiana, sup­port­ed by more than $2 bil­lion in state incen­tives. A shale drilling boom in that region in the last five years has pro­duced a glut of cheap gas, and the exec­u­tives say Sasol can tap that sup­ply to make diesel and oth­er refined prod­ucts at com­pet­i­tive prices. Mar­jo Louw, pres­i­dent of Sasol Qatar, says that his com­pa­ny can pro­duce diesel fuel that burns clean­er, costs less and cre­ates less green­house gas pol­lu­tion than fuel derived from crude oil. . . . . . . . Until recent­ly, the method used to con­vert nat­ur­al gas or coal to liq­uid fuel — known as the Fis­ch­er-Trop­sch process after the Ger­mans who invent­ed it — had been used only by pari­ah nations des­per­ate for trans­porta­tion fuels when they had lit­tle or no oil avail­able. For decades, South Africa defend­ed its sys­tem of apartheid from inter­na­tion­al oil embar­goes by pro­duc­ing syn­thet­ic oil from its rich coal resources. Nazi Ger­many did the same to fuel its mil­i­tary machine in World War II. But with North Africa and the Mid­dle East chron­i­cal­ly unsta­ble and nat­ur­al gas cheap and plen­ti­ful in the Unit­ed States, some say the tech­nol­o­gy is now an entic­ing option to pro­duce var­i­ous fuels with­out import­ing a drop of oil. . . .

“Ris­ing Pow­er Qatar Stirs Unease Among Some Mideast Neigh­bors”; Glob­al Mus­lim Broth­er­hood Dai­ly Report.

EXCERPT: In the cen­ter of Cairo, young men hold up a burn­ing flag for the cam­eras to show their fury at a nation they believe is med­dling in their coun­try and the wider Mid­dle East. It’s a famil­iar image. But it’s not the U.S. flag they are wav­ing, it is that of Qatar, the Gulf state that has used its bil­lions to spread its influ­ence in the wake of the Arab Spring. For most West­ern gov­ern­ments and offi­cials, the influ­ence of Qatar emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khal­i­fa al-Thani’s gov­ern­ment is seen as broad­ly pos­i­tive. In Egypt, Libya and Syr­ia, where Qatar tried to play a role post-Arab Spring, it finds itself blamed for much that has gone wrong on a local lev­el. Close ties to Egypt’s new lead­ers, the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood, have alarmed coun­tries like the Unit­ed Arab Emi­rates, where the Islamist group is still banned and which in Jan­u­ary said it had foiled a Broth­er­hood-linked coup plot. Senior offi­cials in the UAE have long believed Qatar has long-term strat­e­gy to use the Broth­er­hood to redraw the region. ”There is both greater appre­hen­sion and appre­ci­a­tion for Qatar two years after the Arab awak­en­ing in the region,” said Tau­fiq Rahim, Exec­u­tive Direc­tor of Dubai-based geopol­i­tics con­sul­tan­cy Globe­sight. ”While pri­or to the rev­o­lu­tions, Qatar was seen more as a medi­a­tor, its for­eign pol­i­cy recent­ly has been much more proac­tive and in some cas­es par­ti­san.” Some West­ern ana­lysts and diplo­mats believe Qatar’s lead­ers have been effec­tive­ly impro­vis­ing their way through the new land­scape, exper­i­ment­ing to see what they can achieve with the mas­sive wealth gen­er­at­ed by its nat­ur­al gas reserves over the past 15 years. An esti­mat­ed $17 tril­lion in mon­eti­s­able nat­ur­al gas rich­es still remain in the ground. Oth­ers, how­ev­er, see a much more delib­er­ate strat­e­gy. ”What we are see­ing here is a high-stakes pok­er game for the future of the Mid­dle East,” said one Gulf-based West­ern diplo­mat on con­di­tion of anonymi­ty. Even sup­port­ers are con­cerned the coun­try may be over­step­ping its bound­aries and get­ting a rep­u­ta­tion for play­ing favorites. A post from last Octo­ber report­ed on the vis­it to Gaza by the Emir of Qatar described as the “biggest diplo­mat­ic vic­to­ry” for Hamas since tak­ing pow­er five years ago. A post from ear­li­er that week report­ed on the announce­ment of the biggest con­tri­bu­tion of recon­struc­tion aid for Hamas-ruled Gaza since the destruc­tion accom­pa­ny­ing the Israeli-Gaza con­flict four years ago. A post from August report­ed on the plans for an Egypt-Qatar sum­mit where the Egypt­ian Pres­i­dent Mohamed Mor­si was to receive the Emir of Qatar. AP had report­ed ear­li­er that Qatar was grant­i­ng Egypt a $2 bil­lion loan to help the country’s trou­bled econ­o­my. A post from March report­ed that the Deputy Chair­man of the Egypt­ian Mus­lim Broth­er­hood was vis­it­ing Qatar for meet­ings with Qatari offi­cial. An ear­li­er post dis­cussed the relo­ca­tion of Hamas polit­i­cal leader Khaled Mashaal from Syr­ia to Qatar in yet anoth­er sign of the coun­try grow­ing impor­tance as a cen­ter of the Glob­al Mus­lim Broth­er­hood. A series of recent and impor­tant Glob­al Mus­lim Broth­er­hood events have been held in Qatar illus­trat­ing the increas­ing impor­tance of the coun­try to the Glob­al Broth­er­hood. . . .

“In an Alliance with the Dic­ta­tor­ship”; german-foreign-policy.com; 2013/04/15.

EXCERPT: The Prime Min­is­ter of Qatar, who is also the coun­try’s For­eign Min­ster, is arriv­ing in Berlin today for talks on the war in Syr­ia and on strength­en­ing eco­nom­ic coop­er­a­tion. Since some time, this Per­sian Gulf dic­ta­tor­ship has been one of Ger­many’s clos­est allies in the Arab world. As in the 2011 war on Libya, it is sup­port­ing Islamist rebels today in Syr­ia, who are seek­ing to top­ple a gov­ern­ment com­bat­ed by the West. Berlin’s coop­er­a­tion with Qatar on mat­ters of for­eign pol­i­cy is being con­sol­i­dat­ed by eco­nom­ic coop­er­a­tion. Ger­man com­pa­nies ben­e­fit from lucra­tive Mid­dle East con­tracts, while the Qatari rul­ing clan buys a sig­nif­i­cant amount of shares in major Ger­man com­pa­nies, such as Volk­swa­gen and Siemens. Qatar has been link­ing its finan­cial sup­port in France, to a large-scale pub­lic rela­tions cam­paign in the sub­ur­ban slums. Ger­man involve­ment in the war in Syr­ia, will most like­ly also be a top­ic in these talks with Sheikh Hamad bin Jas­sim bin Jabir al Thani in Berlin. A Ger­man Navy “recon­nais­sance” ves­sel is, cur­rent­ly, cruis­ing again off the Syr­i­an coast. Experts believe that Syr­i­an insur­gents are also prof­it­ing from infor­ma­tion retrieved by this espi­onage. . . .

Discussion

2 comments for “Qatar, the Muslim Brotherhood and the Fischer/Tropsch Process”

  1. Just FYI, if you’re pass­ing through cen­tral Wyoming in the future, you might need to keep the tap water at a safe dis­tance from open flames.

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | June 21, 2013, 8:48 am
  2. Here’s an inter­est­ing fun fact about VW, espe­cial­ly in light of its diesel emis­sions cheat­ing scan­dal: It’s 17 per­cent owned by Qatar’s sov­er­eign wealth fund:

    Reuters
    Glen­core, VW hits to push Qatar sov­er­eign fund to diver­si­fy more

    DUBAI | By David French
    Wed Sep 30, 2015 3:31am EDT

    Qatar Invest­ment Author­i­ty’s hit from the slide in Volk­swa­gen (VOWG_p.DE) and Glen­core (GLEN.L) shares can only under­line the sov­er­eign wealth fund’s need to con­tin­ue to diver­si­fy its asset base, indus­try sources said.

    The Ger­man car­mak­er has been pum­meled over an emis­sion test­ing scan­dal while the min­er has came under pres­sure over its debt load, togeth­er wip­ing $5.8 bil­lion off the Qatar fund’s hold­ings since Sept. 18, accord­ing to Thom­son Reuters data.

    Much has been made of the scale of the Qatar Invest­ment Author­i­ty’s (QIA) paper loss­es at a time low­er oil prices are reduc­ing the flow of petrodol­lars into Gulf sov­er­eign wealth funds. QIA has 8.2 per­cent of Glen­core, 17 per­cent of Volk­swa­gen ordi­nary shares and 12.8 per­cent of its pref­er­ence shares.

    As recent­ly as March, VW’s pref­er­ence shares were trad­ing above 260 euros but they dipped again on Tues­day to close at 95.20 euros. Glen­core ral­lied 16.9 per­cent on Tues­day but its clos­ing price of 0.8025 pounds was still well below the 3.16 pounds record­ed in ear­ly May.

    The QIA, which has about $334 bil­lion of assets accord­ing to indus­try track­er the Sov­er­eign Wealth Cen­ter, has been review­ing its invest­ment strat­e­gy as a result of oil’s down­ward move and fol­low­ing the appoint­ment of a new chief exec­u­tive in Decem­ber.

    In June, sources said it would set asset allo­ca­tion tar­gets for the first time and restruc­ture inter­nal deci­sion mak­ing.

    This week, after open­ing a New York office, QIA said the Gulf state was com­mit­ted to putting $35 bil­lion into the Unit­ed States over five years. In Novem­ber last year, the fund also said it would invest $20 bil­lion in Asia over the next five years.

    REDUCED APPETITE

    The slide in the two Euro­pean blue-chip stocks will only height­en the need to con­tin­ue QIA’s evo­lu­tion from being a fund that had about 80 per­cent of its assets deployed on the Euro­pean con­ti­nent as recent­ly as late 2013, indus­try sources said.

    QIA declined to com­ment for this arti­cle.

    Cash avail­able to fund diver­si­fi­ca­tion is not as boun­ti­ful as when oil was above $100 a bar­rel, mean­ing all Gulf sov­er­eign funds will have to focus more on invest­ing returns from exist­ing assets as opposed to just find­ing avenues for new mon­ey.

    One senior banker who reg­u­lar­ly pitch­es invest­ments to the QIA said it was in a health­i­er state than oth­er funds, because Qatar’s wealth was gen­er­at­ed from gas which has not seen such big price swings as oil. But the banker said he had not­ed a reduced appetite for big tick­et invest­ments.

    “When you go and pitch them some­thing that will need a cou­ple of bil­lion dol­lars, they don’t seem to have that kind of liq­uid­i­ty,” he said, speak­ing on con­di­tion of anonymi­ty due to the sen­si­tiv­i­ty of the sub­ject.

    ...

    LONG-TERM VALUE

    Still, despite the sig­nif­i­cant reduc­tions in the val­ue of QIA’s stakes in Volk­swa­gen and Glen­core, the hold­ings were unlike­ly to be regard­ed as under­per­form­ing, accord­ing to one source who works with the QIA.

    VW’s stock price is still well above the 60 euro lev­el when the QIA bought into the com­pa­ny in August 2009, although Glen­core hit an all-time low on Mon­day against an ini­tial list­ing price of 5.30 pounds.

    The fund’s mis­sion state­ment is: “to invest, man­age and grow Qatar’s reserves to cre­ate long-term val­ue for the state and future gen­er­a­tions” — some­thing the source said meant it would be hap­py to ride out short-term volatil­i­ty.

    QIA’s par­tic­i­pa­tion in Glen­core’s $2.5 bil­lion rights issue ear­li­er this month seemed to indi­cate the fund had no plan to turn its back on the Swiss-based min­er.

    How­ev­er, the QIA’s inten­tions and oper­a­tions are large­ly a mys­tery. It has pre­dom­i­nant­ly been a reserved investor which has shunned pub­lic state­ments on its invest­ments, although a notable excep­tion was when it voiced con­cern about the terms for the merg­ing of Glen­core and Xstra­ta in 2012.

    It has made no pub­lic com­ments on either the VW or Glen­core sit­u­a­tions.

    The QIA has nev­er dis­closed results or the size of its port­fo­lio. Details of what it owns come from dis­clo­sures to stock mar­kets when assets are list­ed and from media reports, mak­ing an over­all assess­ment of the impact dif­fi­cult.

    In Octo­ber last year, a report by polit­i­cal risk firm GeoE­co­nom­i­ca said the QIA was the only sov­er­eign fund not com­pli­ant with the San­ti­a­go Prin­ci­ples, a vol­un­tary code of prac­tice on gov­er­nance and trans­paren­cy.

    As we can see, this has­n’t been the best time for Qatar’s wealth fund. And giv­en its lack of trans­paren­cy it’s hard to say how bad things real­ly are. But as the arti­cle not­ed, it could be worse. It could be a wealth fund based on oil and not nat­ur­al gas which has­n’t plum­met­ed near­ly as much:

    ...

    Cash avail­able to fund diver­si­fi­ca­tion is not as boun­ti­ful as when oil was above $100 a bar­rel, mean­ing all Gulf sov­er­eign funds will have to focus more on invest­ing returns from exist­ing assets as opposed to just find­ing avenues for new mon­ey.

    One senior banker who reg­u­lar­ly pitch­es invest­ments to the QIA said it was in a health­i­er state than oth­er funds, because Qatar’s wealth was gen­er­at­ed from gas which has not seen such big price swings as oil. But the banker said he had not­ed a reduced appetite for big tick­et invest­ments.
    ...

    And that points to anoth­er rea­son why the whole VW emis­sions scan­dal could be worse for the QIA. While the nat­ur­al gas-to-liq­uid (GTL) mar­ket for diesel fuel that’ Qatar has been pro­mot­ing prob­a­bly isn’t helped by the emis­sions scan­dal, the scan­dal could indi­rect­ly cat­alyze the growth of Europe’s pas­sen­ger nat­ur­al gas vehi­cle mar­ket, billed as a clean­er alter­na­tive to diesel (it’s sort of debat­able), by clos­ing the cost gap between nat­ur­al gas and diesel emis­sions tech­nol­o­gy:

    Auto­mo­tive News Europe
    VW, Fiat, Mer­cedes will ben­e­fit from CNG mar­ket growth

    Nick Gibbs

    Decem­ber 10, 2014 06:01 CET

    Euro­pean sales of vehi­cles pow­ered by com­pressed nat­ur­al gas could grow ten­fold by 2020, accord­ing to the orga­ni­za­tion respon­si­ble for pro­mot­ing the fuel in the region. Ana­lysts and car­mak­ers, how­ev­er, say that growth is depen­dent on gov­ern­ment incen­tives and an increase in the num­ber of sta­tions offer­ing the fuel across the con­ti­nent.

    “We believe gas is the next big thing in trans­port,” Matthias Maedge, deputy sec­re­tary gen­er­al of the Nat­ur­al and Bio Gas Vehi­cle Asso­ci­a­tion in Europe, told Auto­mo­tive News Europe. The orga­ni­za­tion pre­dicts the num­ber of CNG-pow­ered vehi­cles on Europe’s roads will grow to between 10 mil­lion and 12 mil­lion by 2020 from about 1.2 mil­lion now. Most of those vehi­cles will be pas­sen­ger cars.

    Nat­ur­al gas costs about half the price of gaso­line. As of Sep­tem­ber the aver­age price for CNG across Europe was 79 cents com­pared with 1.49 euros for gaso­line and 1.39 euros for diesel, accord­ing to NGVA data. CNG is pro­mot­ed as a low-CO2 fuel that can be eas­i­ly mixed with bio­gas, enhanc­ing its envi­ron­men­tal cre­den­tials, accord­ing to the NGVA.

    The num­ber of new, fac­to­ry-built mod­els equipped with stan­dard CNG tanks remains lim­it­ed, but is grow­ing with the recent com­mit­ment from Volk­swa­gen brand to launch more gas-pow­ered vehi­cles under its TGI badge.

    Ear­li­er this year the Golf TGI com­pact went on sale, join­ing three oth­er mod­el lines with vari­ants using the fuel: the Up minicar, Touran mini­van and Pas­sat mid­size. Oth­er VW Group brands using the tech­nol­o­gy include: Seat, with the Mii micro­car and Leon com­pact; Audi, with a G‑tron badged ver­sion of the pre­mi­um A3 com­pact; and Sko­da, with the Cit­i­go minicar and the recent­ly launched Octavia com­pact both wear­ing the Czech brand’s G‑Tec badge.

    “There are only advan­tages as far as the cus­tomer is con­cerned, since he can use the more afford­ably priced CNG fuel, but when he needs a greater range he can also fill up with nor­mal gaso­line,” Sko­da sales and mar­ket­ing chief Wern­er Eich­horn told Auto­mo­tive News Europe.

    Oth­er new­com­ers to the niche include Mer­cedes-Benz, which added a B‑class Nat­ur­al Gas Dri­ve com­pact to its mid­size E‑class NGD car ear­li­er this year. The pro­lif­er­a­tion of new mod­els helped boost Europe’s over­all CNG sales by 7 per­cent to 66,952 after nine months, accord­ing to JATO Dynam­ics data.

    Fiat dom­i­nates

    Fiat is Europe’s top-sell­ing CNG play­er — its nine-month sales of 33,197 were almost dou­ble that of sec­ond-placed VW (16,755). Fiat has a com­mand­ing lead because of the size of the CNG mar­ket in Italy, which had 880,000 gas-pow­ered cars and light vans as of June this year, com­pared with 95,708 in Ger­many and 43,796 in Swe­den, accord­ing to NGVA data.

    CNG-pow­ered cars also account for a Europe-best 5 per­cent of Italy’s new-car mar­ket, accord­ing to JATO data, while mar­kets with no gas infra­struc­ture, such as the UK, have zero sales. Pri­vate sales of cars such as the gas-pow­ered Fiat Pan­da are pos­si­ble because the bulk of Italy’s 1,040 nat­ur­al gas fill­ing sta­tions, locat­ed main­ly in the north, are pub­lic.

    Ger­many has almost as many sta­tions at 920, but 840 aren’t for pub­lic use, accord­ing to NGVA data. The poor avail­abil­i­ty of sta­tions puts off buy­ers when there are 10,000 sta­tions in Ger­many that sell diesel and gaso­line.

    Skoda’s Eich­horn said: “If one con­stant­ly has to make a detour to find a fill­ing sta­tion then it doesn’t make sense finan­cial­ly at some point.” Anoth­er deter­rent is that few fuel sta­tion own­ers are will­ing to invest in the com­pli­cat­ed and cost­ly pumps that gas requires.

    Al Bed­well, head of pow­er­train analy­sis at LMC Auto, said: “CNG sta­tions are expen­sive to set up at around three times the price of those for gaso­line and diesel. This is a head­wind for the indus­try.” NGVA’s Maedge agrees. “Infra­struc­ture is key and we have a lot of work to do,” he said.

    Helped by reg­u­la­tion

    The strug­gle by Euro­pean cities to reduce diesel emis­sions is seen as a cat­a­lyst for the cre­ation of more nat­ur­al gas sta­tions and the sale of more CNG mod­els. “Low-emis­sion zones will help us,” Maedge said. Like the oper­a­tors of bus­es and garbage trucks, taxi com­pa­nies could decide to switch to nat­ur­al gas vehi­cles to com­ply with tougher tailpipe reg­u­la­tions, he said. Mer­cedes already sells a taxi ver­sion of the B class.

    Maedge argues that as man­u­fac­tur­ers are forced to add tech­nol­o­gy to reduce diesel emis­sions from cars to Euro 6 lev­els, the price gap to con­vert­ed nat­ur­al gas vehi­cles will close fast. The price gap remains wide. In Ger­many the CNG B class costs almost 1,800 euros more than the equiv­a­lent diesel and near­ly 4,000 euros more than the ver­sion with a gaso­line engine. The CNG-pow­ered VW Golf costs 25,400 euros while a diesel with com­pa­ra­ble pow­er starts at 23,475 euros. The Golf CNG and diesel vari­ants both have CO2 emis­sions of below 99 grams per kilo­me­ter, which is less than the 114g/km pro­duced by the equiv­a­lent Golf with a gaso­line engine.

    Accord­ing to Mer­cedes, future com­pe­ti­tion for nat­ur­al gas cars could come from EVs. Asked how much the com­pa­ny saw the CNG mar­ket grow­ing, a spokesman told Auto­mo­tive News Europe: “This will depend heav­i­ly on the incen­tives for this type of pow­er­train, along with the fur­ther devel­op­ment of the elec­tric seg­ment.”

    ...

    Yes, as of last year, the future for the Euro­pean nat­ur­al gas pow­ered pas­sen­ger cars mar­ket was look­ing up, but it was the clos­ing of the cost cap between diesel and nat­ur­al gas pow­ered vehi­cles as a con­se­quence of stronger “Euro 6” reg­u­la­tions that could real­ly help the CNG mar­ket:

    ...
    Helped by reg­u­la­tion

    The strug­gle by Euro­pean cities to reduce diesel emis­sions is seen as a cat­a­lyst for the cre­ation of more nat­ur­al gas sta­tions and the sale of more CNG mod­els. “Low-emis­sion zones will help us,” Maedge said. Like the oper­a­tors of bus­es and garbage trucks, taxi com­pa­nies could decide to switch to nat­ur­al gas vehi­cles to com­ply with tougher tailpipe reg­u­la­tions, he said. Mer­cedes already sells a taxi ver­sion of the B class.

    Maedge argues that as man­u­fac­tur­ers are forced to add tech­nol­o­gy to reduce diesel emis­sions from cars to Euro 6 lev­els, the price gap to con­vert­ed nat­ur­al gas vehi­cles will close fast. The price gap remains wide. In Ger­many the CNG B class costs almost 1,800 euros more than the equiv­a­lent diesel and near­ly 4,000 euros more than the ver­sion with a gaso­line engine. The CNG-pow­ered VW Golf costs 25,400 euros while a diesel with com­pa­ra­ble pow­er starts at 23,475 euros. The Golf CNG and diesel vari­ants both have CO2 emis­sions of below 99 grams per kilo­me­ter, which is less than the 114g/km pro­duced by the equiv­a­lent Golf with a gaso­line engine.
    ...

    Yep, as bad as he VW scan­dal must be for any enti­ty that owns 17 per­cent of its stock it could be worse for the QIA.

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | November 1, 2015, 8:28 pm

Post a comment