Berlin (dpa) - The federal government has rejected a general speed limit on highways despite the ongoing coalition dispute.

"The federal government is not planning a general speed limit on German motorways," said deputy government spokeswoman Ulrike Demmer in Berlin on Monday. That was not provided for in the coalition agreement between the Union and the SPD. In addition, there is “no new status”.

The Ministry of Transport and the Environment have been on the issue for months: Minister of Transport Andreas Scheuer (CSU) rejects a general top speed of around 130 kilometers per hour. Environment Minister Svenja Schulze (SPD) is in favor of this and justifies this with traffic safety and climate protection. The SPD had named the speed limit at its party conference as one of the topics for additional projects that it wanted to talk to the Union about.

A spokesman for Schulzes said that expert reports and practical tests have already shown that a speed limit increases road safety. Among other things, he referred to a motorway section in Brandenburg. The initiative to put the topic back on the agenda came from the SPD leaders. It is now up to the party leaders to consider how to deal with it.

The speed limit debate was boiled up again over Christmas. Scheuer had said negative: "We have far more outstanding tasks than putting this highly emotional issue over and over again in the shop window - for which there are no majorities at all." SPD chairwoman Saskia Esken, on the other hand, had affirmed a speed limit on motorways be good for climate protection and serve security.

A spokeswoman for Scheuers renewed the negative attitude of the ministry on Monday. She pointed out that there was no majority for a speed limit in a vote in the Bundestag a few weeks ago. The German motorways were also among the safest in the world.

The German insurance industry proposed a practical test. This should clarify "whether a speed limit on motorways really leads to a significant increase in safety and, if so, how much," said Siegfried Brockmann, head of accident research for insurers in the Association of the German Insurance Industry, the editorial network in Germany. “So far, the effects have not been scientifically investigated. As far as Germany is concerned, we have a gap. »

The ADAC drivers' club welcomed the proposal. "In terms of the effects on traffic safety in particular, today's estimates are still far apart," said ADAC Vice President for Transport, Gerhard Hillebrand, the German Press Agency on Monday. «It makes sense to initiate a scientific investigation using pilot routes, including the examination of time differentiations. A comprehensive study could bring valuable insights. »

It is a matter of objectifying the debate, said Hillebrand. «The discussions about the speed limit are heated in this country. It is important to examine the limits and possibilities of a speed limit for traffic safety and climate protection in detail. »