Economy

Court rejects Ghosn's request to attend Nissan board meeting

Court rejects Ghosn's request to attend Nissan board meeting”

While Carlos Ghosn's defense team last week continued to challenge Japanese prosecutors over what they termed irregularities in the case against the disgraced Renault-Nissan executive, Nissan chief Hiroto Saikawa was working his own campaign to impugn Ghosn's character.

The new board structure will be headed by Renault Chairman Jean-Dominique Senard and replaces two previous bodies based in the Netherlands - one joining Renault and Nissan, the other combining Nissan and Mitsubishi Motors. The new board, consisting of those four executives, will meet every month in Paris or Tokyo and oversee various projects, helping to make the companies' operations more efficient, they said.

He had asked to attend the board meeting but was conspicuously absent after the Tokyo District Court rejected his request on Monday.

Mr. Ghosn was arrested in November and released from detention on bail last week.

His subsequent indictment in Japan on three charges of financial misconduct has led to renewed scrutiny of his management and lifestyle at both companies. He says he is innocent.

"Nissan's strong opposition to Ghosn's attendance is very regrettable", Hironaka said outside his law office.

But he has been stripped of his chairmanships at Nissan and fellow alliance partner Mitsubishi, and removed as CEO of Renault, while awaiting trial.

Renault owns 43 percent of Nissan, which makes the March subcompact, Leaf electric auto and Infiniti luxury models.

"We have made a decision to join our forces again to enhance the strength of our collaboration", Senard said. The MoU said Senard should be "a natural candidate for the position of vice chairman and a representative director of Nissan".

His downfall was plotted due to "opposition and anxiety" over the plan to bring Nissan and Renault closer together, Ghosn alleged.

Nissan holds a 15 percent, non-voting stake in Renault, whose top shareholder is the French government.

As boss of Renault, he took what many observers at the time thought was a gamble by saving Nissan from the brink of bankruptcy and tying it to the French firm.

Since Ghosn's release, he has been seen in Tokyo on outings with his family.

A statement released on Ghosn's behalf expressed disappointment over his inability to attend Tuesday's meeting.

However, he remains on the boards of all three, given a shareholder vote is required to remove a board member.

He believes that the accusations against him, which he has frequently described as "meritless and unsubstantiated", should not prevent him from giving his input into a company he saved from the brink.



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