French state: We didn't veto Renault-Fiat Chrysler deal
In this Monday, Jan. 14, 2019 file photo, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles FCA logo is shown at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya, file)
The Associated Press
Published Thursday, June 13, 2019 4:54AM EDT
PARIS -- France's finance minister says the government didn't oppose a merger deal between carmaker Renault and Italian-American rival Fiat Chrysler.
Speaking on FranceInfo news broadcaster, Bruno le Maire said the government's key priority is to strengthen the alliance of Renault with its longtime Japanese partner Nissan.
He said a merger with Fiat Chrysler "remains an interesting opportunity."
He added: "We have never vetoed it. We simply asked five additional days to study the operation." He noted that Nissan was hesitant about it.
Fiat Chrysler had proposed a 50-50 merger that would have created the world's third-largest carmaker worth almost $40 billion. Earlier this month, the group pulled the proposal, citing political conditions in France.
The French state is Renault's biggest shareholder with a 15% stake.