Crisis-hit Nissan issues fresh profit warning

Nissan downgraded its projection for net profit in the fiscal year to March 2019 from ¥410 billion ($3.7 billion) to ¥319 billion. (AFP)
Updated 24 April 2019
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Crisis-hit Nissan issues fresh profit warning

  • The firm downgraded its projection for net profit in the fiscal year to March 2019
  • This is the second cut in Nissan’s forecast in recent months

TOKYO: Nissan issued a profit warning on Wednesday, deepening the woes of the Japanese car giant as it seeks to recover from the shock of former boss Carlos Ghosn’s arrest.
The firm downgraded its projection for net profit in the fiscal year to March 2019 from ¥410 billion ($3.7 billion) to ¥319 billion, the second cut in its forecast in recent months.
Nissan appeared to acknowledge the recent difficulties surrounding the Ghosn affair, which has cast questions over the company’s own corporate governance.
It cited as a reason for the downgrade “the adverse operating environment facing the company during the fourth quarter, and the impact of recent corporate issues on sales.”
The profit warning came as ex-chairman Ghosn awaits his fate after prosecutors hit him with a fourth set of charges over alleged financial misconduct.
Authorities suspect he syphoned off around $5 million for his personal use from money transferred from Nissan to a dealership in Oman.
Ghosn denies that charge and also insists he is innocent of all allegations against him.
In February, Nissan already slashed its full-year forecast, as it revealed that nine-month net profit had dropped 45 percent — a decline the firm blamed on rising raw material costs and foreign exchange difficulties.
It was forced to downgrade its net profit forecast for the fiscal year to March to ¥410 billion, compared to ¥500 billion earlier.
The results came as Nissan and its partners Renault and Mitsubishi Motors are seeking to turn the page on Ghosn’s arrest for financial misconduct, which has exposed a rift in the three-way tie-up.


Lebanon’s Hariri calls for cabinet solidarity in budget debate

Updated 43 min 3 sec ago
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Lebanon’s Hariri calls for cabinet solidarity in budget debate

  • The PM said cabinet ministers need to be united and responsible
  • Lebanon’s debt is almost 150% of its GDP

BEIRUT, June 18 : Lebanon Prime Minister Saad Al-Hariri on Tuesday called for parliament to quickly approve the country’s 2019 budget and urged his coalition government to avoid internal disputes.
The cabinet this month agreed a budget plan that shrinks the projected fiscal deficit by 4 percentage points from last year to 7.6% by cutting spending and raising taxes and other fees.
“What I want during the debate is for us to be responsible and united, and not contradictory,” Hariri said in a statement, addressing cabinet ministers as to their comportment during the parliament debate.
Parliament’s finance committee is debating the draft budget and has suggested amendments, local newspapers reported. It will then put the budget to the full assembly to ratify it.
Parliament is mostly composed of parties that are also present in the coalition government and which supported the budget there.
Since the budget was agreed there have been fierce arguments between parties in the coalition over several subjects, though these have not targeted the budget.
Lebanon has one of the world’s heaviest debt burdens, equivalent to about 150% of GDP, and the International Monetary Fund has urged it to cut spending.
“We have held 19 cabinet meetings to agree on this draft budget and these sessions were not for fun, but for deep, detailed debate over every clause and every idea,” Hariri said.
“For this reason, I consider it the responsibility of each of us in government to have ministerial solidarity...to defend in parliament the decision that we have taken together,” he added.
After the 2019 budget is agreed, the cabinet must quickly start working on the 2020 budget and on approving the first phase of a program of investments toward which foreign donors have offered $11 billion in project financing. (Reporting by Angus McDowall, editing by Ed Osmond)