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EghtesadOnline: Iran Khodro Industrial Group has taken large steps towards expanding its local and international markets, said IKCO CEO, Hashem Yekehzareh.

He added the company is seeking to achieve a high status in the international market thought adopting a new and completely different approach to car production, reports ISNA.

Addressing IKCO’s shareholders in the company’s general assembly, Yekehzare also noted that after the nuclear deal (JCPOA) between Iran and P5+1 group of countries, IKCO was the first Iranian company which signed a cooperation agreement with its former foreign partner (Peugeot) and made the first foreign direct investment in Iran’s auto industry through establishing a joint venture (IKAP).

He went on saying that Peugeot 2008 would enter Iran’s market by March 20th as IKCO’s first joint product with Peugeot. According to him, the two sides are ready to increase their joint car production by 200,000 sets.

Elsewhere in his speech, Yekehzare touched on Japan’s Suzuki Company, saying IKCO has opened successful negotiations with Suzuki to jointly produce new Vitara as well as Ciaz and Baleno.

He also gave further details on IKCO and Mercedes Benz cooperation, saying their agreement has been almost finalized and will be signed in the next two months.

“Based on the agreement, the two sides will begin their cooperation in production and after sale services. Meanwhile, IKCO and Benz will establish a production company with IKCO having 51% of its shares and Benz 49%. The proportion would be reversed in sales and after sales services,” he added.

The CEO of Iran Khodro then noted that the company is now involved in negotiations with Datsun which will lead to an agreement soon, adding, talks like this usually last for one year and half.

“Renault is expected to establish a joint venture with an Iranian car company with 80% of its shares belonging to the French company. The two sides will produce Symbol and Duster but based on an agreement signed earlier, other cars would also be produced via cooperation with Iran Khodro,” he said.

Yekehzare also added that the cooperation agreement covers 75% of Renault’s operation in Iran, saying, the two sides are expected to jointly produce 300,000 sets of one certain model.

“Iran Khodro increased its production in 2014 with producing over 600,000 vehicles. Since March to June, 2016, the company’s production showed a 7% growth in comparison with the same period last year. Meanwhile, its spring sales showed a 40% increase over the spring of 2015,” he noted.

He concluded that, in line with the new model of Dena in 2017, Iran Khodro plans to produce Peugeot 207 hatchback through localizing its technology and completely cutting its reliance on the French company. According to Yekehzare, the sedan model with automatic gearbox would be released by March 20th.

IKCO Iran Khodro Hashem Yekehzareh