A team of Honda Motor senior executives, including company president Hiroyuki Yoshino, was in Guangzhou in July for high-level talks on expansion of the Japanese carmaker's joint ventures in the city, South China Morning Post said. The talks were held with municipally owned Guangzhou Auto Group and Dongfeng Motors.
Guangzhou Auto is Honda's partner in the 50-50 Guangzhou Honda joint venture, which produces premium Accord cars for the Chinese market. Expansion plans include building a new factory that will produce subcompact cars for export to Asia and Europe. The new plant will start production in 2004 and will have an initial annual production capacity of 300,000 units.
According to Nanfang Daily, Honda is insisting on 80 per cent ownership of the new venture, and this and other issues have still to be settled. The plans also include doubling production capacity at the existing venture by making smaller cars for the domestic market.