Business

MMC seeks 'beneficial' alliances

Struggling automaker Mitsubishi Motors Corp. is discussing alliances with automakers at home and abroad to reduce its reliance on DaimlerChrysler AG, according to MMC President Hideyasu Tagaya.

“We are considering mutually beneficial business tieups” with automakers in addition to DaimlerChrysler, he said.

Tagaya said MMC is seeking cooperation in fields such as procurement of materials, development of parts and product distribution.

He refused to disclose details until gaining consent from negotiating partners.

The company’s new vehicle sales in Japan plunged 64.3 percent in June from a year earlier to 4,885.

To help curb further declines, Tagaya said MMC will streamline operations by combining dealerships and providing financial support to ailing dealers “on a case-by-case basis.”

MMC has been hit hard by multiple vehicle-defect coverups.

Earlier this year, DaimlerChrysler refused to provide financial support to MMC, despite being the biggest shareholder in the Japanese carmaker.

Tagaya said the company’s immediate task is to regain consumer trust, which it lost as a result of the coverups, while it tries to reduce its reliance on DaimlerChrysler.

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