Aleksey Nikolaev, president of AvtoVAZ since 1994, was interviewed by Knut Moberg.
Can AvtoVAZ go bankrupt?
It could happen, but AvtoVAZ is for Russia like Fiat is for Italy, General Motors is for the USA and Volkswagen for Germany. I cannot understand any reason why we should close down. AvtoVAZ is one of the companies paying the most tax to the government.
Are companies interested in taking you over?
Well, Daewoo showed an interest, but that was some time ago. Now we are talking only with Opel and GM about a joint venture.
Is AvtoVAZ depending on an agreement with Opel?
An agreement with Opel would be very important for our company. It would give all employees a new spirit. But I know the problems we must solve, mainly the AvtoVAZ financial situation.
Are you making any money on the cars you export?
No. We will reduce our exports and will stop exports to several countries like the UK and Canada. The exchange rate is the main reason. And we have strong demand for Lada cars in Russia. I see no reason why we should export cars, as we make more money on sales here in Russia than abroad.
Will you close down your subsidiary EuroLada in Hamburg, Germany?
No. We need a network and we must help our dealers and customers.