World Bulletin/News Desk
Renault does not intend to cut jobs or plants "at this stage", but domestic factories must improve productivity to match sites in Spain and Britain, Chief Operating Officer Carlos Tavares said in an interview published on Friday.
European automakers are struggling to cope with a glut of excess capacity amid a sustained market decline. Renault's larger domestic rival PSA Peugeot Citroen is cutting more than 10,000 domestic jobs, closing its Aulnay assembly plant near Paris and shrinking another.
"At this stage, there is no plan to cut jobs or close a site," Renault's no.2 executive was quoted as saying by La Tribune. "Our plants are in a difficult situation, which we are managing with temporary layoffs ... But the slump in Europe is likely to last."
Renault plans talks with unions to bring the competitiveness of its French plants into line with its "benchmark" factory in Palencia, Spain and with Japanese affiliate Nissan's Sunderland site in Britain, Tavares said.
"I don't see any reason why our performance should be lower in France than in Spain," he added.
Renault employs about 50,000 workers in France.
Greece has already received two bailouts totalling 240 billion euros but fellow euro zone member Ireland said last week that it would have to negotiate a third programme.
The Ukraine crisis has tested the loyalties of Bulgaria, a Balkan country with historical ties to Moscow and heavily dependent on Russian energy supplies.
Syria expels three United Nations aid workers hindering aid development in the country
Russia has overcome a "psychological barrier" and is ready to deepen its economic ties with China, Deputy Prime MinisterArkady Dvorkovich said
With Chancellor Angela Merkel's right-left coalition plus the opposition Greens, it was the biggest majority for any euro zone rescue package so far in the 631-seat chamber.
The agreement commits Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda and Burundi to cooperate with the United States in customs issues, ease red tape at borders, reduce customs wait times and harmonize trade standards.
Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena has unnerved China with his re-examination of certain projects that Chinahas invested in, including a $1.5 billion "port city" project in Colombo.
EU energy chief Maros Sefcovic invited Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak and his Ukrainian counterpart Volodymyr Demchyshyn for talks
Gazprom and Ukrainian state energy firm Naftogaz have accused each other of not sticking to agreements on gas supplies.
The new canal, that will allow two-way traffic of larger ships, is supposed to increase revenues by 2023 to $13 billion.
A day after euro zone finance ministers agreed to a four-month extension of a financial rescue, Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis gave a frank assessment of Greece's financial position.
The agreement is the culmination of talks that began in September after the government decided its own solutions to its fiscal crisis were failing to convince investors.
Energy union highlights bloc's attempt to seek independency from its main gas supplier - Russia.
Merkel's right-left coalition is set to prevail, despite vocal pockets of resistance on the right and left.
Republicans passed the bill to increase pressure on Obama to approve the pipeline, a move the president said would bypass a State Department process that will determine whether the project is in the U.S. national interest.
Turkish PM Davutoglu expresses Turkey's readiness to help in supplying energy to Central Europe.