Renault aims to increase Russian market share

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French automaker Renault said Tuesday it aims to increase its Russian market share to 40 percent by 2016 in cooperation with partners Nissan of Japan and AvtoVaz, Russia's top car company.

To achieve that target, the three firms will increase output to 1.6 million vehicles a year, Bruno Ancelin, head of Renault's Russian operations said.

Of the projected 40 percent market share, AvtoVaz would account for 25 percent, Renault 8.0 percent and Nissan 7.0 percent, Ancelin said.

In the first half of 2011, the trio held 34.8 percent of the market, he said.

Ancelin said the three companies currently had production capacity of 1.1 million vehicles -- 160,000 by Renault and 50,000 by Nissan and the rest from AvtoVaz.

"We have a potential for high growth," Ancelin said

Russia has an ageing car fleet where the average vehicle is 13 years-old and ownership is low.

Renault said it expected total car sales in Russia to reach 2.7 million vehicles in 2011, up from 1.9 million last year.

The Russian automobile sector is on the rebound after suffering badly in the global slump which saw sales tumble 49 percent in 2009 and then rise 30 percent in 2010.

Renault owns 25 percent of AvtoVaz but it and Nissan are widely reported to be planning the acquisition of a controlling stake in the Russian carmaker.

© 2011 AFP

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