General Motors reconsidered its decision to sell Opel/Vauxhall after the Competition Commission raised concerns over alleged preferential treatment by the German government.
In October Competition Commissioner Neelie Kroes wrote to German economy minister Karl-Theodor zu Gettenberg regarding “significant indications” that aid to Opel was subject to the precondition that Magna was selected as buyer.
The decision by GM to keep Opel/Vauxhall has angered workers and some management at Opel. The GM board initially indicated it would sell a 55 per cent stake in Opel to Magna and its Russian partner, Sberbank, in September.
"The catalyst for all this was the EU saying you [the German government] only made the money available to one investor," said GM board chairman Ed Whitacre. "The board did what they should have done and revisited the issue."
He added: "We had to ask ourselves how we could be a global player and not play globally."