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PHOTO CAPTION: Renault Zeo ZE electric concept car slated for production in 2012.

Renault, French Politics and Zeo ZE Electric Car

President Sarkozy pledges to provide loans of 170 million euros ($244 million) to develop electric cars and batteries.

Published: 17-Jan-2010

Renault SA Chief Executive Officer Carlos Ghosn promised to maintain jobs at the company’s Flins plant after meeting with President Nicolas Sarkozy and obtaining state aid to develop electric cars.

Renault will continue to produce its current Clio models at the site northwest of Paris and will add some production of its new Clio IV, Sarkozy said in a statement today. The French government will provide loans of 170 million euros ($244 million) to develop electric cars and batteries, he said.

Ghosn was summoned to meet Sarkozy after France’s second- largest carmaker floated the idea of shifting production of the next Clio compact car to its plant in Bursa, Turkey. The suggestion came after France spent about 600 million euros to boost car sales and provided Renault with 3 billion euros of aid in the face of the worst recession since World War II.

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