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Thursday, January 25, 2007
GM, Ford in race for Daewoo Romania
Romania's troubled Daewoo Auto is up for grabs. Reports suggest that General Motors and Ford Motor, as well as Chery of China, apart from India's own Tata, have submitted letters of intent to buy the company. The Romanian authorities are expected to decide on the suitor this June.

The buyer is expected to guarantee a minimum annual output of 300,000 units to finally get the company. The Romanian Daewoo currently produces three models, which include a first-generation version of the Matiz city car, the Cielo small hatchback and a Nubira four-door saloon. The kits for al the models are supplied by GM, which took over some of Daewoo's manufacturing assets in 2002. The plant, located in Craiova, off Bucharest, employs 4,000 people and has capacity to build 200,000 cars and 300,000 engines a year.

GM, which has shown interest in the plant, might use it to produce the Chevrolet Spark and its Aveo or Kalos mid-sized car. The company may also produce compact models for Opel.

It may be recalled that the Romanian government had sold 51 per cent of the factory to Daewoo in 1994 but bought it back for $60m in order to save it from closure.

Meanwhile other reports said that GM is mulling over a joint venture with Ukraine's Ukravto also to produce Aveos at Poland's FSO plant, another former Daewoo plant that the US carmaker supplies with kits.

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