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Ouster sees FAW regain control
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FAW Group Co, China's second-biggest car maker, has regained the sales operations of its venture with Volkswagen AG by replacing Su Weiming, and in the process discontinued a sales system that was the subject of complaints by dealers, people close to the deal said.

Su Weiming, general manager of FAW Volkswagen Sales Co Ltd in China, will be replaced by Hu Yong, previously the director of the Ninth Research and Development Institution under FAW.

Su, a 42-year-old Singaporean, is set to retain his post as executive vice president of Volkswagen Group China.

Su, who took his position in FAW VW in 2005 after serving DaimlerChrysler China, Beijing Jeep and Volkswagen Group China, established a new sales system as he aimed to reverse the joint venture's sluggish sales as well as increase its competitiveness.

However, the system triggered complaints among dealers and also hurt the interests of related parties. Some dealers then began to refuse to place their purchase orders.

In general, the fight for the sales right has long been a bone of contention in partnerships between Chinese and foreign car makers because of high profit return. Chinese firms controlled distribution because they know the domestic market better and also to protect their interests while foreign counterparts kept technological knowledge.

FAW VW Sales Co, an equally owned venture by Volkswagen and FAW in 1990s, is responsible for the sales of Chinese-made Volkswagen models.

(Shanghai Daily June 5, 2008)
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