FRANKFURT Oct 17 German car parts supplier
Continental AG expects its business with car and van
makers to grow slightly next year as Asia and North American
markets offset a difficult European business, its chief
executive was quoted saying in a German newspaper.
"Europe will stagnate at its current relatively low level.
The trough should have been reached more or less. Maybe there
will still be a decline of 1 to 2 percentage points," Financial
Times Deutschland quoted CEO Elmar Degenhart saying.
Degenhart said that even though business this year was
getting more difficult by the quarter, he still expects
Hanover-based Continental to increase sales by more than 7
percent this year to more than 32.5 billion euros ($42.3
Some of its suppliers, though, were running into
difficulties and Continental was lending support in some cases,
he added, according to the report published on Wednesday.
Europe's new car market shrank at the fastest pace in the
past 12 months in September, leaving nearly all major brands
with double-digit declines.
So far this year, western Europe's car market has shrunk by
($1 = 0.7679 euros)
(Reporting by Ludwig Burger; Editing by David Holmes)