(Repeats story that ran late on Wednesday, with no changes to text)
NEW DELHI, June 19 (Reuters) - Cutting its stake in alliance partner Nissan is not on Renault’s agenda, the French carmaker’s chief executive Thierry Bollore said on Wednesday after a global vehicle launch in New Delhi.
Renault and Fiat Chrysler (FCA) are looking for ways to resuscitate a failed merger plan and secure Nissan’s approval, Reuters reported this month.
As part of the fallout of the collapse of talks, Nissan is poised to urge Renault to significantly cut its 43.4% stake in the Japanese carmaker, two people told Reuters.
“This is not at all our agenda,” Bollore told reporters in New Delhi on Wednesday when asked if Renault would reduce its stake in Nissan to get a deal with FCA.
“For us it is so important that we continuously improve our alliance. Not only for now, but also for the future and this is the mindset which we are in, and these are the discussions we have with our partners,” Bollore said after the global launch of Renault’s Triber multi-purpose vehicle.
Bollore said the alliance partners planned to meet in early July and while he declined to disclose the agenda, he added that it would be “massive”.
The 20-year-old partnership between Nissan and Renault has been strained since the alliance’s former chairman Carlos Ghosn was arrested for suspected financial misconduct in November. Ghosn denies any wrongdoing.
The alliance was plunged further into crisis this month as Renault’s demand for a greater say in Nissan’s governance drew rare public censure by the Japanese automaker.
Nissan is due to hold a shareholder meeting to vote on its overhauled governance structure on June 25. Bollore said Renault would participate, but the talks were private.
Renault and FCA were in $35 billion merger talks until the Italian-American carmaker withdrew after the French government, Renault’s biggest shareholder, blocked a vote by its board and demanded more time to win Nissan’s backing.
Bollore said there is no offer from FCA on the table and declined to comment on the role of the French government. (Reporting by Munsif Vengattil; Writing by Aditi Shah; Editing by Alexander Smith)
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