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AvtoVAZ's Rescue, after Putin's Visit to Paris

The light at the end of the tunnel for Russian carmaker AvtoVAZ is slowly fading away, after Russian Premier Vladimir Putin announced it will idle any rescue plans until after he has a talk with Renault representatives in Paris this week.

"We will start implementing AvtoVAZ's development program after high-level talks in Paris," First Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov was quoted as saying by Autonews. "The program is expected to last for several years with the involvement of Renault-Nissan," he added.

The news comes the same day when rumors pointed to a larger involvement of the French manufacturer in the Russian business. As Sergei Chemezov, CEO of state-owned industrial conglomerate Rostekhnologii said Renault's 25 percent stake in AvtoVAZ may be increased. This would allow the Russian state to use less money to save the ailing carmaker.

"We understand that our work to clear the debts of AvtoVAZ should be considered jointly with the potential possibilities of Renault-Nissan as an investor. Then these measures taken together make real sense," Shuvalov continued.

Renault on the other hand want to help AvtoVAZ only by providing technology, at least for now. The French were given an ultimatum by Russia's Putin, who asked for a larger investment in AvtoVAZ, warning that otherwise the 25 percent stake may slowly fade away...

According to analysts, the situation has somewhat changed since GM decided to keep Opel and left Russia with no access to the German technology. As a consequence, Putin seems to have softened his tone as he heads for Paris.

As is the case with Opel, AvtoVAZ's fate may very well be decided this week.

 
 
 
 
 

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