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Small electric cars may be unaffordable for some: VW chairman to newspaper

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The move to electric vehicles will make cars significantly more expensive, meaning they may become unaffordable for people on low incomes in the future, the chairman of Volkswagen (VOWG_p.DE) said in an interview published on Sunday.

The German carmaker is still reeling from a 2015 scandal over cheating on emissions tests and needs to ramp up production of electric vehicles to meet toughened European emmissions-cutting targets.

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“We have the clear goal of making electromobility accessible to a broad section of the population, that is to make it affordable,” Hans-Dieter Poetsch told the Welt am Sonntag newspaper.

But he said it could be difficult to maintain the prices of many entry-level vehicles.

“The current price level cannot stay the same if these cars are equipped with electric motors,” said Poetsch. “Therefore, it will inevitably lead to significant price increases in the small car segment.”

Poetsch referred to the tougher-than-expected targets to cut greenhouse emissions from cars by 37.5 percent by 2030, which the European Union agreed in December.

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Volkswagen said in December it may have to step up plans for mass production of electric vehicles to meet the EU targets.

VW plans to spend almost 44 billion euros on developing electric cars, autonomous driving and new mobility services by 2023.


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UK travel giant Thomas Cook set to collapse: report

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Thomas Cook's 178-year existence was reported to be coming to an end on Monday after the British travel firm struggled to find private investment to keep it afloat, potentially affecting thousands of holidaymakers.

The operator has said it needs £200 million ($250 million) or else it will face administration, which could affect 600,000 holidaymakers and require Britain's largest peacetime repatriation.

A source close to the negotiations told AFP that the company had failed to find the cash from private investors and would collapse unless the government intervened.

But ministers are unlikely to step in due to worries about the pioneering operator's longer-term viability, the Times reported, leaving it on the brink.

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‘We are the people’: Watch Billy Porter get a standing ovation for his passionate speech at the Emmys

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In a powerful and passionate speech accepting his Emmy, "Pose" actor Billy Porter showered the audience with love and proudly reminded all of their right to belong and be loved.

"Oh, my God. God bless you all! The category is love, y'all, love!" Porter exclaimed.

The epic FX show "Pose" depicts Black and Latinos in the LGBTQ ballroom culture of New York City in the 1980s in the first season and the early 1990s in the second season.

"I am so overwhelmed and so overjoyed to have lived long enough to see this day," he said. "James Baldwin wrote, 'It took many years of vomiting up the filth I was taught about myself and half-believed, before I was able to walk on the earth as though I had a right to be here.' I have the right. You have the right. We all have the right."

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Paris show of King Tutankhamun artifacts set new record with 1.42 million visitors

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A blockbuster Tutankhamun show set a new all-time French record Sunday, with 1.42 million visitors flocking to see the exhibition in Paris, the organisers said.

The turnout beat the previous record set by another Tutankhamun show billed as the "exhibition of the century" in 1967, when 1.24 million queued to see "Tutankhamun and His Times" at the Petit Palais.

"Tutankhamun: Treasures of the Golden Pharaoh" -- which has been described as a "once in a generation" show -- will open in London in November.

The last time a show of comparable size about the boy king opened there in 1972 it sparked "Tutmania", with 1.6 million people thronging the British Museum.

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