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Chinese firm in talks over Hummer

2009-02-17 07:51

A Chinese car maker has held talks over buying General Motors'Hummer-brand sports utility vehicle unit, an official of the Chinesefirm said on Tuesday in response to a report by Bloomberg News.

"We should keep it a secret for the time being," the official from the Sichuan Auto Industry Group said when asked about talks with GM over the Hummer unit.

Bloomberg quoted unidentified sources as saying Sichuan Auto, one of China's smaller auto makers, could pay up to 500 million dollars for Hummer.

The Chinese firm would finance the purchase through loans from state-owned banks and may face competition from other firms interested in Hummer, it said.

Sales of Hummer vehicles fell sharply last month, while GM must reduce its debt to qualify for a US government bail-out.

In a statement on it website, GM said it would present a "dramatic restructuring plan" later on Tuesday.

"In response to the deteriorated economy, this aggressive plan accelerates GM's transformation to a leaner, stronger company - a transformation that both our supporters and critics have called for," GM said.

Sichuan Auto is officially listed with assets totalling about 1 billion yuan (146 million dollars), according to its website.

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