UPDATE 1-CEO Ghosn may escape Renault's pay freeze

Wed Jan 30, 2013 1:35pm EST

* French pay freeze to also affect managers - senior executive

* Renault confident on new French labour deal by early Feb (Adds detail)

PARIS Jan 30 (Reuters) - A proposed pay freeze at French carmaker Renault's domestic operations for this year will also affect the group's managers but not necessarily its chief executive Carlos Ghosn, a senior executive said on Wednesday.

The company's French operations chief Gerard Leclercq also said that Renault was confident it was close to a union deal to bolster the competitiveness of its French plants.

"The pay freeze we proposed for 2013 will apply to everyone," Leclercq told journalists after addressing lawmakers on the French parliament's economic affairs committee.

"As to Carlos Ghosn, his remuneration is decided by the board of directors, so it's not up to me, it's the sovereign decision of the board," he added.

Last week Renault said it had proposed a pay freeze this year, followed by a 0.5 percent increase next year and a 0.75 percent rise in 2015. Salaries increased by 3 percent in 2012.

The proposals were made public after a series of meetings with staff representatives as Renault pushes to align productivity in France with cheaper European sites in Spain and the UK.

"It's possible that we'll sign a deal by early February," Leclercq had told Reuters before addressing lawmakers.

The carmaker told unions at a meeting earlier this month that it was aiming to cut 7,500 jobs in France by 2016 to help boost competitiveness as the slump in its domestic and European markets shows no sign of easing. (Reporting by Gilles Guillaume, Dominique Vidalon)

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