Ford hopes China easing will speed up Zotye venture approval

FILE PHOTO: The Ford logo is pictured on the company's stand during the 88th Geneva International Motor Show in Geneva, Switzerland, March 7, 2018. REUTERS/Denis Balibouse

BEIJING (Reuters) - Ford Motor Co's F.N Asia head said on Wednesday he hoped recent Chinese moves to relax ownership rules in the country's auto market would speed up regulatory approval for its electric vehicle joint venture with local firm Zotye Automobile Co Ltd 000980.SZ.

Asia Pacific President Peter Fleet, speaking at an auto show in Beijing, also said the U.S. carmaker did not expect the rule changes to otherwise significantly impact its strategy in China, the world’s largest auto market.

China said this month it would scrap a limit on foreign ownership of all automotive ventures by 2022 in a major policy shift to open up the market, with limits on new-energy vehicle (NEV) ventures to be removed this year.

Reporting by Aditi Shah; Writing Adam JourdanEditing by Christopher Cushing