European car makers seek EU help

PARIS (AP) -- European automakers have appealed to the European Union for a $55 billion package of low-cost loans.

The request comes amid an economic downturn and pressure from new rules aimed at curbing greenhouse gas emissions.

The European Automobile Manufacturers Association says it's concerned about shrinking consumer confidence.

It has urged the EU to help "reinforce the momentum in consumer demand for fuel-efficient vehicles."

The association is also calling on the EU to grant "incentives" for car owners to scrap vehicles more than 8 years old to accelerate the renewal of auto fleets.

Monday's appeal came after the U.S. government approved a $25 billion loan package last week that aims to keep Detroit's downtrodden automakers afloat.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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