Renault, Nissan say alliance not headed for break-up

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FILE PHOTO: The logos of car manufacturers Renault and Nissan are seen in front of dealerships of the companies in Reims, France, July 9, 2019. REUTERS/Christian Hartmann

TOKYO/PARIS (Reuters) – French carmaker Renault (RENA.PA) and Japanese partner Nissan Motor (7201.T) said their alliance was in no danger of being dissolved, denying a media report of a potential break-up that sent their shares skidding to multiyear lows.

The alliance, which also includes Japan’s Mitsubishi Motors Corp (7211.T), is “solid, robust, everything but dead,” the chairman of Renault, Jean-Philippe Senard, told Belgian newspaper L’Echo.

Nissan, in response to “speculative international media reports,” said it was “in no way considering dissolving the alliance.”

“The alliance is the source of Nissan’s competitiveness,” the Japanese automaker said in a statement. “Through the alliance, to achieve sustainable and profitable growth, Nissan will look to continue delivering win-win results for all member companies.”

Renault shares hit six-year lows on Monday as investors worried the French group’s 20-year cost-sharing alliance with Nissan was headed for a break-up without Carlos Ghosn to hold it together.

Long-standing tensions in the Franco-Japanese partnership have been heightened since Ghosn’s arrest in Tokyo in November 2018 on allegations of financial misconduct, which he denies.

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A Financial Times report on Monday that Nissan executives are making contingency plans for a split with Renault appeared to accelerate a sell-off in the French manufacturer’s shares.

Nissan shares tumbled to their lowest in 8-1/2 years on Tuesday in Tokyo.

Reporting by Matthias Blamont in Paris and Chris Gallagher in Tokyo; Editing by Chris Reese & Shri Navaratnam

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