PSA chief seeks talks with Merkel over Opel

PSA chief seeks talks with Merkel over Opel”

"The company carries responsibility for the sites, the development center and the securing of employment", German Economy Minister Brigitte Zypries, a Social Democrat, said in an e-mailed statement to Bloomberg on Tuesday.

'A PSA spokesman confirmed that the company was in talks with the USA carmaker to deepen their partnership, ' Reuters said on Tuesday.

GM is reportedly seeking a multi-billion dollar amount for Opel.

The maker of Peugeot, Citroen and DS cars is "exploring a number of strategic initiatives with GM with the aim of increasing its profitability and operating efficiency, including a potential acquisition of Opel", a spokesman said.

Detroit-based GM has been trying to return its European business to profit.

Bertrand Blaise, executive VP for corporate communications at Group PSA, is quoted by the news agency as saying, 'We are in discussions with Opel to expand upon our existing projects, ' but declined to comment further.

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In response, GM said the pair had been working together since 2012.

"The Government remains in close contact with GM as we closely monitor the situation". Selling to PSA is a lower risk in that sense because the two companies already share some engine and chassis technology.

The local carmaker said previously more than one third of its Australian line-up post-2017 could come from Europe, but the loss of Opel to the GM umbrella could force Holden to change course.

The purchase of Opel and its United Kingdom subsidiary Vauxhall would make Peugeot the second biggest auto maker in Europe, with potential annual European sales of over 2.4 million and a healthy 16 per cent market share.

It would overtake Renault to become the second largest European carmaker, after Volkswagen. "This is my clear expectation regarding General Motors".

For GM, offloading Opel could mean giving up on the global sales volume race in which it is now ranked third behind Volkswagen and Toyota (7203.T), with just over 10 million vehicles delivered past year. In a life-saving measure, the Peugeot family was forced to sell 25.6 per cent of its stake in the French vehicle maker, with 12.8 per cent going to the French government and a further 12.8 per cent to Peugeot's Chinese joint venture partner Dongfeng.

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