Daim­ler chief re­moved af­ter ‘racist rant’ in China

Malta Independent - - WORLD -

Ger­man car­maker Daim­ler has apol­o­gised and re­moved a se­nior ex­ec­u­tive from his job af­ter he al­legedly made racist re­marks in a row over park­ing in China.

Rainer Gaert­ner, Daim­ler’s trucks and buses pres­i­dent in the coun­try, also al­legedly used pep­per spray on by­s­tanders who in­ter­vened.

Chi­nese me­dia said the in­ci­dent took place in a Bei­jing car park on Sun­day.

Daim­ler said it was “a purely pri­vate is­sue, which has now been re­solved in an am­i­ca­ble man­ner”.

The ar­gu­ment, in­volv­ing strong lan­guage, be­gan when Mr Gaert­ner cut into a park­ing space in Bei­jing’s well-to-do Shunyi sub­urb ahead of a lo­cal driver, re­ports said.

Ac­cord­ing to the Com­mu­nist Party news­pa­per Peo­ple’s Daily, the Daim­ler ex­ec­u­tive then said: “I have been in China one year al­ready; the first thing I learned here is: All you Chi­nese are bas­tards.”

In a state­ment, Daim­ler added: “Such an in­ci­dent re­flects in no way the val­ues of Daim­ler and we sin­cerely apol­o­gise for the con­cerns raised by this mat­ter.

“The na­ture of the dis­pute and in par­tic­u­lar the man­ner in which it was con­ducted, ir­re­spec­tive of any com­ments al­leged to have been made, is ad­judged to be not only of con­cern to the public but viewed by us as detri­men­tal to the stand­ing of our com­pany, un­be­com­ing of a man­ager of our brand and prej­u­di­cial to our good name,” it said.

It added that Chi­nese au­thor­i­ties have closed their in­ves­ti­ga­tion into the in­ci­dent.

It is the sec­ond time this month that a se­nior Ger­man of­fi­cial has been crit­i­cised for re­marks about Chi­nese. The EU’s Dig­i­tal Econ­omy Com­mis­sioner Guen­ther Oet­tinger was forced to apol­o­gise for com­ments made about Chi­nese of­fi­cials in a speech.

Re­act­ing to the lat­est re­marks, English-lan­guage Chi­nese news­pa­per the Global Times said: “No mat­ter how dirty your words are, your heart should not be dirty.”

And the al­leged re­marks also pro­voked an an­gry re­sponse on so­cial me­dia.

One poster to China’s Sina Weibo plat­form said: “Ex­pats should be­have them­selves and never put on airs even if they are rich or su­pe­rior.” Oth­ers sug­gested they would stop buy­ing Daim­ler cars as a re­sult of the in­ci­dent.

De­spite the fall­out, Daim­ler said Mr Gaert­ner re­mains an em­ployee of the com­pany and will be moved to a new role.

Rainer Gaert­ner

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Malta

© PressReader. All rights reserved.