Volvo keeps rights to technology in Geely plan-paper

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Ford Motor's Volvo car unit will retain the rights for its licenced technologies, while its Chinese bidder Geely will get the right to use the technologies, a Geely spokesman was quoted as saying on Tuesday.

Zhejiang Geely Holding Group, the parent of Geely Automobile, was named by Ford as a preferred bidder for its loss-making Swedish car unit last month.

Geely's proposal is in line with the best interest of Volvo, Yuan Xiaolin told the Shanghai Securities News.

Volvo will retain all its manufacturing and research facilities along with its dealership network and its agreements with the labour union, Yuan said.

Above all, Volvo can strengthen its sales network in China, the world's biggest auto market, and continue to develop low emission cars under the proposal, he said.

Yuan did not give a timetable for the deal saying Geely was currently in detailed talkes with Ford.

Geely Chairman Li Shufu told Reuters last month he was confident of the Volvo bid. [ID:nSHA76648]

The Wall Street Journal said earlier in the month Geely would build a new Volvo plant in China capable of making 300,000 vehicles a year.

Volvo could sell one million cars a year globally within four or five years, compared with recent annual sales of about 400,000 vehicles, the newspaper said.

Ford and Geely have not disclosed a possible sale price for Volvo, but media reports suggested it could be closer to $2 billion than the $6.45 billion Ford paid for the Swedish car maker in 1999.

A number of home-grown Chinese automakers, including Chery Automobile, are keen to break into foreign markets and are aggressively developing their own brands while moving beyond traditional offerings in the small, low-priced car segment into more upmarket vehicles.

(Reporting by Fang Yan and Jacqueline Wong)

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