Daimler and Geely in talks to expand cooperation

Dieter Zetsche, CEO of Daimler

Daimler Chief Executive Dieter Zetsche on Wednesday stated the automaker is in talks about expanding its cooperation with China’s Geely, even as German politicians draw up ways to safeguard German industry from foreign competitors.

In October last year Daimler stated it was setting up a ride-hailing joint venture in China with Geely after the Chinese automaker purchased a 9.69 percent stake in Daimler and asked for an alliance, catching German managers off guard.

“We are in talks about other subjects which have a bigger dimension,” Zetsche informed journalists about the Chinese talks, refusing to elaborate further.

Germany’s government on Tuesday said it could buy stakes in domestic companies, consisting automakers, as a way to protect them from unwanted foreign takeovers, presenting a marked shift in industrial plan.

“Nations that pursue industrial policies tend not to be competitive, we did not ask for these measures,” Zetsche informed journalists in Stuttgart, where Daimler was hosting its yearly press conference.

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