Europe Scandals

Merkel to testify in Bundestag over Wirecard scandal

The German Chancellor will appear as a witness before a committee investigating the surrounding the bankrupt Wirecard company. The focus is on Merkel’s trip to China, where she defended the company.

German Chancellor at the end of April is to testify as a witness before the Bundestag committee, which is investigating the scandal around the bankrupt German company Wirecard. This was confirmed by one of the committee members, the representative of the Free Democratic Party (FDP) Florian Towncar. “April will be intense,” said Tonka, commenting on the information that representatives of the country’s top leadership will address the committee.

will answer the committee’s questions on April 23, German Finance Minister Olaf Scholz on April 22, German Economics Minister Peter Altmaier, and German Justice Minister Christine Lambrecht may also be invited to testify.

Representatives of the committee are primarily interested in the events of September 2019, when during a visit to China, Merkel defended Wirecard, although there have already been suggestions in the media that representatives of this company are spreading false information. The Chancellor is going to be asked, in particular, about the role of the lobbyist and former Minister of of the Federal Republic of Karl-Theodor Zu Guttenberg.

Wirecard helped make payments in the gray area of the Internet

Wirecard, founded in 1999, built an acquiring business, an intermediary service between credit and debit cardholders, banks, and merchants. Initially, she helped make payments in the gray area of the Internet, which more reputable companies did not want to take on: settlements in online casinos and on porn sites. The pinnacle of Wirecard’s success was the company’s joining the elite of German business in September 2018: inclusion in the Top 30 of the main German stock exchange index — DAX.

After the audit, Wirecard admitted that it had credited €1.9 billion from non-existent bank accounts. The price of her shares on the stock exchange collapsed, and she herself declared bankruptcy. The Federal Office for the Supervision of the Financial Sector called the situation “a disaster” and “shame”. International rating agency Moody withdrew Wirecard rating.

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