The Annual General Meeting of the Volkswagen Group has repeatedly been the target of protests in recent years. But the disturbances were rarely as severe as this time. Climate glue blocked the access road to the event center, in front of which demonstrators had gathered. Inside, tumultuous scenes unfolded, from the cake throwing at major shareholder Wolfgang Porsche to the naked activist who stood up for the rights of Uyghurs in China.
Of course, laws must be respected. But at the same time, it would be too easy to dismiss the actions as the work of a handful of weirdos.
VW is in such serious conflicts in many parts of the world that this year's Annual General Meeting can be seen as a reflection of the problems. Climate protection and China, low share price and software problems: all this forms a toxic mixture that will keep Europe's largest car company in suspense for a long time. It would also be wrong to use the confusion at the meeting as an argument to meet only virtually in the future. This year's season of general meetings of large companies has already shown in many places that the digital format has a number of disadvantages.