German Automotive Industry Association (VDA) has unanimously elected Hildegard Müller as new president, succeeding Bernhard Mattes.

Müller was responsible for the grid and infrastructure division until October on the holding board of energy supplier, Innogy SE. 

"We are pleased to have gained Hildegard Müller as an experienced manager as VDA president," said VDA VP, Ola Källenius, chairman of Daimler and Arndt Kirchhoff, CEO, Kirchhoff Automotive, through a basic translation service.

"We are convinced Hildegard Müller will master the task of leading the VDA into the future in a rapidly changing environment. We will support them to the best of our ability. "

Müller was a member of the German Bundestag from 2002 to 2008 and has been Minister of State with the Federal Chancellor since 2005. From 2008 to 2016 she was CEO of the Federal Association of the Energy and Water Industry (BDEW), after which she moved to Innogy SE.

In the years which followed, she pushed ahead with the expansion and digitisation of networks as well as the development of an e-mobility charging infrastructure.

"The automotive industry is the backbone of the German economy," said Müller. "It stands for engineering, quality and efficiency both nationally and internationally. In the face of digitisation, changes in mobility behaviour and, in particular, major climate change challenges, the industry will face tremendous changes in the future. 

"It takes power for change and the courage to innovate for alternative forms of power – both have been proven time and again by the automotive industry in the past.

"The VDA has an important role to play in promoting this change, to bring together all stakeholders and to foster a societal dialogue on the future of mobility."

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