France Requests Talk With Nissan- Renault Merger

France has asked Japan to hold a ministerial meeting to discuss the future of the alliance between Renault SA and Nissan Motor Co. following the arrest of Carlos Ghosn, but Tokyo is likely to refuse the request, sources close to the matter said Monday.

 

While the French government is apparently aiming to retain its influence over the alliance as the largest shareholder in Renault, Japan is planning to respond by saying it will not intervene in a matter of private companies, the sources said.

 

photo credit to: photo credit to: https://www.thelocal.fr

 

Japanese media reported Sunday that France asked Japan to accept a merger of the two automakers when officials of the two countries met in Tokyo last week. French Economy and Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire denied that the French delegation, which included a director of Renault, made such a request.

 

France has proposed talks between Le Maire and Japan’s Economy, Trade and Industry Minister Hiroshige Seko later this week when they attend the World Economic Forum in the Swiss resort of Davos.

 

But the Japanese government wants to “avoid any move in public” on the issue in order to prevent it from developing into an intergovernmental conflict, a senior industry ministry official said.

 

Seko met with Le Maire in Paris in November after Ghosn was arrested in Japan earlier that month, with the two issuing a joint statement that the two governments support the auto alliance, which also involves Japan’s Mitsubishi Motors Corp.

 

Renault is expected to put new leadership in place this week by replacing Ghosn as chairman and CEO, since he has been denied bail in Japan. Ghosn has denied all allegations against him.

 

Both Nissan and Mitsubishi ousted Ghosn as chairman after his arrest. Ghosn, former Nissan and Renault CEO, was charged of violating the financial instruments law and aggravated breach of trust.

 

Reference: France asks minister for talks with Japan on future of Renault-Nissan

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