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Business

DaimlerChrysler Not Giving Up on Truck Toll

The head of DaimlerChrysler, Jürgen Schrempp, has said he still hopes to resolve the differences of opinion between the German government and the Toll Collect consortium. On Tuesday, the government cancelled its contract to build a high-tech truck toll system with the companies, which include DaimlerChrysler, Deutsche Telekom, and Cofiroute, France's highway tolls operator. According to the daily newspaper Die Welt, the consortium has offered to raise its liability for any future delays to the start of the system to €1 billion ($1.3 billion), if it receives a new contract to continue the project. An unnamed government spokesperson said that while officials were skeptical that the deal with Toll Collect could be saved, they were prepared to listen to any new proposals. Schrempp said that a solution would have to be found within the next 10 days. A Deutsche Telekom spokesperson declared that the company still believes in Toll Collect and is working on a solution. Meanwhile, Hans-Burghart Ziermann of Toll Collect has told German news magazine Focus that work is continuing on the system, which could be operational by the end of this year. Talks between the partners broke down earlier this week when Toll Collect reportedly said it was not prepared to guarantee implementation of the system before 2006.