Vladimir V. Kadanikov is the chairman of Russian carmaker AvtoVAZ, the latest joint venture partner of General Motors. Kadanikov talked about future prospects and the financial situation of the sleeping Russian car giant with Automotive News Europe's Georg Auer.
Your debt of $120 million (E132.4 million) is really very small considering situations elsewhere in the auto industry. Why does it weigh so heavily on you?
We are quite comfortable with it. But people in Russia [keep questioning it]. Some think they could change ownership of the [Togliatti, near Moscow] plant. I am absolutely sure nothing will happen. If you compare it to debts other automakers have, it is ridiculous.
Have you ever had trouble honoring your bills?
No, it has never happened at AvtoVAZ. We always pay our wages and our bills. Only in 1995 did we once delay payment for a very short period.
Are you producing profitably?
If you are working without profit, it is not moral. So we are working with a profit margin. At least I am feeling very moral.