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Nissan, Renault mulling closure of Netherlands-based alliance

This photo shows the logos of Nissan Motor Co. (L) and Renault SA at a dealership in Tsukuba, northeast of Tokyo, on Feb. 13, 2019. (Kyodo)

TOKYO (Kyodo) -- Nissan Motor Co. and Renault SA are considering closing their joint venture in the Netherlands, sources said Monday, with the Japanese-French auto alliance aiming to establish a new management structure after the arrest of former chairman Carlos Ghosn.

The Amsterdam-based joint venture named Renault-Nissan B.V., which oversees the partnership's operations, had been led by its chairman Ghosn until he was detained by Japanese authorities on Nov. 19 for alleged financial misconduct.

The venture set up in 2002 had become nonfunctional in recent years and the alliance including Mitsubishi Motors Corp. has decided on key strategies at other meetings, according to the sources.

The joint venture funded a dinner party held at the Palace of Versailles on the former chairman's birthday and parties with his friends at Rio de Janeiro's carnival, French media reports.

The two automakers last month launched a joint investigation into whether the venture is involved in any potential financial misconduct.

Ghosn was replaced as chairman and CEO of Renault by Jean-Dominique Senard and Thierry Bollore, respectively, and Nissan removed Ghosn as chairman and appointed Senard as a new director subject to approval at a shareholders' meeting on April. 8. Bollore also succeeded Ghosn as chairman of the joint venture.

Nissan, Renault and Mitsubishi Motors are looking to strengthen their joint operations under their new management teams.

In a similar move, Nissan and Mitsubishi are considering dissolving their joint venture Nissan-Mitsubishi B.V., which was established in June 2017 in the Netherlands.

Mitsubishi Motors said in January that an internal investigation had found Ghosn "illegally" received around 7.82 million euros ($8.9 million) in remuneration from the venture.

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