Russian gov’t seeks to reassure AvtoVAZ after Renault suspension
Russia yesterday vowed to help its largest car maker, AvtoVAZ, majority-owned by the Nissan-Renault group, after Renault said it was suspending work at its Moscow factory following calls by Kyiv for a boycott.
AvtoVAZ is the top-selling manufacturer on the Russian market, making Lada brand cars, but it has halted production at two factories due to lack of parts.
The Russian Trade and Industry Ministry said it was in “constant contact” with AvtoVAZ and the Nissan-Renault group, which controls 69 percent of AvtoVAZ.
It said “all the necessary actions are being taken to return to stable operation of all the production lines as soon as possible.”
Ukraine’s foreign minister on March 23 called for a global boycott of Renault over its earlier refusal to leave the Russian market in the aftermath of the Kremlin’s invasion of Ukraine.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky in a video address to France’s parliament on March 23 said “French companies must quit the Russian market.”
He said Renault and other French businesses such as hypermarket chain Auchan, “must stop sponsoring the Russian war machine.”
Renault announced on the same day it was immediately suspending operations at its Moscow factory, which makes Renault and Nissan cars.
It also said it was considering “the possible options” for AvtoVAZ, while Renault Group downgraded its 2022 financial outlook.
AvtoVAZ said this month it would keep two of its factories in the cities of Togliatti and Izhevsk closed until late April, placing workers on annual leave. It sold nearly 500,000 vehicles in Russia in 2021.