The Lithuanian Environment Ministry has started a probe to find out how many Volkswagen cars equipped with software designed to cheat emissions tests there are in the country and what sanctions could be imposed on the German carmaker.
© DELFI / Karolina Pansevič

"We have instructed the Pollution Prevention Department to find out how many such cars there are (in Lithuania) and what damage has been done to the environment due to the pollution," Environment Minister Kęstutis Trečiokas told BNS on Friday.

The minister said that the probe had been started before the European Commission's call for national investigations.

Trečiokas expects the results of the probe to be available within a week, or in ten days' time at the latest, noting that the number of such cars in Lithuania should not be large.

"Not many new cars are bought in Lithuania and there should not be many of these vehicles. But in any case, we will seek to clarify the situation," the minister told BNS.

The authorities will also look into what measures could be taken again Volkswagen, he said.

The European Commission on Thursday called on member states to investigate whether Volkswagen cars with diesel engines complied with the EU's pollution requirements.

Volkswagen admitted on Tuesday that some 11 million diesel vehicles worldwide were fitted with the so-called "defeat devices" and that it was setting aside around 6.5 billion euros to cover the fallout.

Many countries around the world have launched investigations and threaten to take legal action against the German carmaker.

Based on data from Lithuania's state vehicle registration company Regitra, some 16,700 Volkswagen cars made between 2009 and 2014 are registered in the country. There is no information as to how many of these vehicles have diesel engines.

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