volkswagen znak.jpg
Photograph: Photo by Bruno Kussler Marques, used under CC BY

German automaker Volkswagen, whose biggest market is in China, signed a memorandum of understanding with Jianghuai Automobile Co (JAC) Wednesday to push forward negotiations on joint development of electric vehicles.  

"As we aim to be at the forefront of e-mobility, Volkswagen Group is looking forward to explore all options to set up a close and mutually beneficial partnership with JAC," Matthias Mueller, chairman of the board of management of VW, said in a statement. 

"We believe this cooperation would not only benefit our two organizations, but would also be of great value to our customers, a sound environment and the Chinese society in general," Mueller said. 

JAC, based in the capital Hefei in China's eastern Anhui province, is one of the top sellers of electric vehicles in the country and has yet to strike a partnership with a foreign carmaker.   

China requires foreign carmakers to set up businesses with local partners to help boost the technological and operational advancement of the domestic industry. 

An Jin, chairman of JAC, said in a joint statement: "We look forward to a full-scope cooperation together with Volkswagen Group, focus on new energy vehicles, to provide Chinese consumers with highly cost-effective battery electric vehicle (BEV) products that promote the development of the Chinese new energy vehicle sector."

VW already has partnerships for production of passenger vehicles with China's SAIC Motor Corp and FAW Group. 

A slowdown in the world's second-largest economy hurt foreign carmakers in 2015, with Chinese car sales declining for the first time in two years. 

But leading German carmakers are now bullish about prospects for the world's largest auto market. 

Volkswagen's deliveries in China rose 7.3 per cent to 1.392 million in the first six months of 2016, boosting global sales, the carmaker said.   

Competitor Daimler saw 33-per-cent growth in Chinese sales in the period until the end of July. 

Last year, Volkswagen recalled nearly 2,000 diesel vehicles in China to correct engine control software that the carmaker has admitted were designed to cheat emissions tests.

Latest news

Red Cross: Bodies of 74 migrants wash ashore in Libya

The bodies of 74 migrants washed ashore in Libya, in the north-western city of Zawiya, a spokesman of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) said Tuesday.

Ancelotti makes charity donation after middle finger gesture

Bayern Munich coach Carlo Ancelotti is to donate 5,000 euros (5,200 dollars) to a charity foundation run by the German football federation DFB following his middle finger gesture towards Hertha Berlin fans.

Azerbaijan's long-time leader Aliyev appoints wife as vice president

The long-time president of the oil-rich, Caspian Sea nation of Azerbaijan, Ilham Aliyev, appointed his wife, Mehriban Aliyeva, as vice president on Tuesday.

HSBC reports 62-per-cent fall in annual profit, blames one-off costs

Banking giant HSBC on Tuesday reported a 62-per-cent fall in its annual profit last year, blaming losses incurred from the sale of HSBC Bank Brazil and other one-off costs.

Le Pen quits meeting with Lebanon's Sunni cleric over headscarf row

France's far-right presidential candidate Marine Le Pen walked away from a meeting on Tuesday with Lebanon's senior Muslim Sunni cleric after she refused to wear a headscarf.

Podravka revenues up 15 pct, profit up 54 pct

The Podravka Group that operates in two main business segments: food and pharmaceuticals, generated a net profit in 2016 of HRK 182.4 million, which is 54.7% more than in 2015 without taking into account the one-off effect of consolidating the Zito company or deferred tax returns of Belupo in 2015, according to the company'y unaudited financial statements released on Tuesday.

Chinese prefecture requires all cars to install tracking devices

A prefecture in China’s troubled north-western province of Xinjiang is requiring all vehicles to install satellite tracking devices, a move that comes just weeks after authorities warned against cars being used for terrorist attacks.

Rohingya activist urges companies to stop investing in Myanmar

Foreign companies need to stop investing in Myanmar in order to stop the country's discrimination against its Muslim minority Rohingya, a prominent Myanmar activist said Tuesday.

ASEAN concerned about militarization in disputed South China Sea

South-East Asian countries are concerned about growing militarization in the disputed South China Sea and stressed the need for dialogue to ease tensions, the Philippines’ foreign minister said Tuesday.

HRK 4.5 mln allocated for Croat minority abroad

A total of HRK 4.5 million kuna, or HRK 1.5 million more, has been allocated from the state budget for the Croatian minority living in 12 European countries and the decision on the allocation of the funds was made by state secretary in the Central Office for Croats Abroad, Zvonko Milas.

Iraqi forces shell Mosul airport in advance of storming it

Iraqi forces began shelling Mosul's airport on Tuesday as they make advances in anticipation of seizing it from the extremist Islamic State militia, police chief Raed Jawdat said.

France to slaughter 600,000 ducks to eradicate bird flu

French authorities are planning to slaughter some 600,000 ducks in order to eradicate bird flu from a south-western region, Agriculture Minister Stephane Le Foll confirmed on Tuesday.

Mainly immigrant suburb of Stockholm hit by riots

Dozens of youth clashed with police in a mainly immigrant suburb of the Swedish capital Stockholm on Monday night after an arrest in an underground train station.

Cause of death still unclear in North Korean killing in Malaysia

The cause of death is "still pending" following an autopsy of the estranged half-brother of North Korea's ruler, following his mysterious death at Kuala Lumpur's airport last week, Malaysia's director general of health said Tuesday.

Rebels seek to halt advances by extremist militia in southern Syria

Moderate Syrian rebels launched a counter-attack on Islamic State-linked militants after a series of Islamic State advances in south-western Syria, near the Golan Heights, a monitoring group said Tuesday.