PARIS - Asia's economic crisis has Valeo Chairman Noel Goutard worried.
France's biggest supplier reported a 23 percent rise in net profits for 1997. But Goutard said Valeo expects little growth in the world car market this year.
He said the Asian financial crisis is 'an element of uncertainty.'
Under the best circumstances, he said worldwide production will be flat at 53 million-54 million units.
Valeo closed a heating plant in South Korea last month. Goutard said there are no plans to close other factories in the region.
'The slowdown in demand will impact our growth,' said Goutard. He said Valeo will approach new acquisitions cautiously.
Valeo reported a 1997 profit of FF1.5 billion ($246 million) on a 19 percent rise in sales to FF34.0 billion.