Renault aims to restart Nissan merger talks within 12 months

Hopes for a merger increased after the appointment of new alliance board led by Renault's Chairman Jean-Dominique Senard. (AFP/File)
Updated 27 March 2019
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Renault aims to restart Nissan merger talks within 12 months

  • The merger was actually part of previously ousted Carlos Ghosn
  • Ghosn was arrested in Tokyo on charges of under-reporting his salary

France’s Renault SA intends to restart merger talks with Japan’s Nissan Motor Co. Ltd. within 12 months, after which it will set sight on a bid to buy Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV, the Financial Times reported on Wednesday.
The plans signal a return to the strategies supported by former Nissan boss Carlos Ghosn who held talks about merging Renault with Fiat Chrysler two to three years ago, FT said citing sources familiar with the matter, adding that the proposal was opposed by the French government back then.
Late last year, Ghosn was ousted as Nissan chair and arrested in Tokyo on financial misconduct charges of under-reporting his salary. Ghosn has said the charges were “meritless.”
The recent formation of a new alliance board led by Renault Chairman Jean-Dominique Senard has led to an increase in confidence that the two parties can now push ahead with the merger plans, according to FT.
Fiat Chrysler is also seeking a partnership or merger and the company is holding talks with rivals for a deal, FT reported.
Fiat did not immediately respond to Reuters’ request for comment. A Renault spokesman declined to comment. Nissan said it did not comment on rumors.


Urgency needed to boost Palestinian economy: IMF chief

Updated 26 June 2019
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Urgency needed to boost Palestinian economy: IMF chief

  • The MF has been warning of severe deterioration in the Palestinian economy
  • ‘If there is an economic plan, if there is urgency, it’s a question of making sure that the momentum is sustained’

MANAMA: IMF chief Christine Lagarde said Wednesday that major economic growth was possible in the Palestinian territories if all sides showed urgency, as she took part in a US-led conference boycotted by the Palestinian leadership.
The International Monetary Fund has been warning of severe deterioration in the Palestinian economy, with tax revenue blocked in a dispute with Israel which has also imposed a crippling blockade on the Gaza Strip for more than a decade.
“If there is an economic plan, if there is urgency, it’s a question of making sure that the momentum is sustained,” said Lagarde.
The IMF chief is attending a conference in Bahrain to discuss the economic aspects of a United States plan for Israeli-Palestinian peace, which has already been rejected by the Palestinians as it fails to address key political issues.
Lagarde said for the US plan to work “it will require all the goodwill in the world on the part of all parties — private sector, public sector, international organizations and the parties on the ground and their neighbors.”
Citing examples of post-conflict countries, Lagarde said that private investors needed progress in several sectors including strengthening the central bank, better managing public finance and mobilizing domestic revenue.
“If anti-corruption is really one of the imperatives of the authorities — as it was in Rwanda, for instance — then things can really take off,” she said.
The plan presented by White House adviser Jared Kushner calls for $50 billion of investment in the Palestinian territories and its neighbors within a decade.
The proposals for infrastructure, tourism, education and more aim to create one million Palestinian jobs.
Gross domestic product in the Gaza Strip declined by eight percent last year, while there was only minor growth in the West Bank.
Kushner, opening the conference on Tuesday, called the plan the “Opportunity of the Century” — and said the Palestinians needed to accept it before a deal can be reached on political solutions.
The Palestinian Authority has rejected the conference, saying that the US and Israel are trying to dangle money to impose their ideas on a political settlement.
Washington says it will unveil the political aspects of its peace deal at a later date, most likely after Israel’s September election.