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Nissan Motor Co. will postpone the target year for achieving one of its global sales goals.

Nissan has pledged to sell 4.2 million vehicles worldwide in the 2008 business year through March 2009, but the company has decided to change that to the 2009 business year or later, Nissan officials said late Sunday.

It is the first time Nissan has postponed a target year since President Carlos Ghosn took the helm of the automaker in 2000.

The officials said the postponement is due to sluggish sales in the United States and Japan. That is the same reason Nissan cited when it said in February it was likely to see its group net profit fall in the business year through March 31 for the first time since Ghosn became president.

In its midterm business plan, Nissan has vowed to boost its global vehicle sales to 4.2 million in business 2008 from 3.388 million in business 2004.

However, the number of vehicles sold in global markets in business 2006 is expected to slip below the 3.57 million sold the previous year, according to the officials, adding that the fall is a reaction to the company’s efforts to launch a number of new-model cars in business 2004 and 2005.

Nissan believes it will probably not be able to add nearly 700,000 units to the business 2005 result in only two years, according to the officials.

Ghosn became a corporate guru in Japan by saving its second-largest automaker from bankruptcy and turning it around in a short period of time.

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