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Auto govt turned fugitive Carlos Ghosn says Covid will drive consolidation

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High-flying automotive govt turned worldwide fugitive Carlos Ghosn believes the coronavirus pandemic will speed up consolidation of the worldwide automotive business, together with his former employer Nissan Motor.

In a uncommon interview following his daring escape to Lebanon from Japan on Dec. 29, the previous Nissan chairman stated the business will proceed to battle even after a vaccine is permitted.

“Even if they find a vaccine immediately, is going take probably one year before things start to come back to normal. A lot of companies are going to be struggling. They’re going to be suffering,” he stated in an interview on CNBC’s “Closing Bell.”

He’s now writing a e-book about his time on the Japanese automaker, which he was credited with saving from the brink of smash earlier than the then-CEO had him arrested on accusations of a wide range of monetary crimes in 2018. While the U.S. has stated Japan can extradite two Massachusetts males who helped Ghosn in his escape, the previous govt stays at massive and guarded in Lebanon the place he has a passport and residential together with his spouse.


“I’m not very – optimistic – knowing what I know,” he stated. “And particularly – the excuses and the explanation they are giving for the difficulties – not only in Nissan, but also at Renault and Mitsubishi models.”

Electric automobile maker Tesla was a pacesetter, he stated. Its shares are up almost 400% thus far this 12 months – Ghosn stated the market is rewarding CEO Elon Musk for “establishing a vision” and “giving incredible path towards competing in the rest of the industry.”

“It it speaks a lot about where the market is betting the future will be. And I can’t blame them,” he stated. “You know, in a certain way, I can’t blame them. Now – is it excessive or not? Well – this will depend a lot on the future performance of Tesla. But I must say that Elon has done a great job into getting out all the potential of the company and exciting the markets. And this is to his benefit.”

Leaving Lebanon?

Ghosn reiterated to CNBC that he believes the fees towards him had been a part of a conspiracy by Nissan executives and public officers to cease the well-known govt from additional integrating Nissan with French automaker Renault.

Nissan, in a press release Tuesday, defended its actions: “Nissan had carried out a robust and thorough internal investigation that included external lawyers. Based on substantial and convincing evidence found in the investigation, Nissan established that Carlos Ghosn and Greg Kelly intentionally committed serious misconduct and significant violations of corporate ethics. The company contends that the facts surrounding the misconduct will be shown during the court proceedings and the law will take its course.”

Kelly, a former colleague and alleged co-conspirator of Ghosn, stays on trial in Japan.

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