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Reinfeldt 'concerned' over Saab deal collapse

AFP/The Local · 12 May 2011, 16:59

Published: 12 May 2011 16:59 GMT+02:00

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"It naturally raises concern that the partners couldn't get all the way to a definitive agreement," Reinfeldt told reporters in the western city of Gothenburg, near Saab's factory in Trollhättan.

"It is the owners and the management of Saab that must take this forward and find long-term financing. We in the government have done all we could to facilitate the process," he said.

The Swedish government has repeatedly said it would not offer financial assistance to Saab.

The beleaguered carmaker was bought in January 2010 by Dutch firm Spyker after not turning a profit during 20 years under General Motors.

Its cash difficulties became evident in April when the Saab plant came to a halt "until further notice" because suppliers had halted deliveries over unpaid bills.

Saab's rescue appeared to be near certain when earlier this month, Spyker announced China's Hawtai would inject €150 million ($212.5 million) of urgently needed cash into Saab in exchange for a stake in Spyker.

But on Thursday Spyker said the deal was off "with immediate effect" because Hawtai Motor Group had been unable to obtain the green lights it needed.

"I fully understand that the workers at Saab are worried about their jobs and of course I hope for a positive resolution," Reinfeldt said.

Swedish Enterprise Minister Maud Olofsson meanwhile said she was also concerned for staff and Saab's suppliers, many of whom were forced to lay off employees when Saab's assembly line came to a halt.

Story continues below…

"I hope Victor Muller will succeed in his ambitions to find a new partner," she said.

"Saab needs capital to get production going and pay its suppliers ... a strong partner with plenty of capital and commitment is required," she said.

AFP/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

18:02 May 12, 2011 by Jasper2
Swedish Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt said Thursday he was "worried about the failure of Chinese rescue funding for the Saab-Spyker auto group." So he isw not only worried, he is also concerned.

As is Swedish Enterprise Minister Maud Olofsson.

So they are both worried and concerned.

They are also both worthless.
18:11 May 12, 2011 by Nemesis
There is a simple ot solution to this.

Give SAAB lock, stock and barrel to Von Konensegg.

Oh wait, that would be inconvenient, as it might keep jobs in Sweden.
20:19 May 12, 2011 by Icarusty
They should dismantle the brand and give it to the Swedish people.

I will take the wheelnuts
20:49 May 12, 2011 by Great Scott
@Jasper2 & Nemesis

Spot on.
21:23 May 12, 2011 by NickJT
Are readers of The Local as thick as those who have commented above. For god's sake if you are to make a comment come up with something that is useful to the discussion. Why do you think Reinfeldt and Olofsson are worthless? Should government spend 1 miljard of our money to keep the company going for another year? And what happens after that? Can the goverment open up new markets for Saab, can government officials provide the expertise required to develop new generations of Saabs etc. Of course not.
21:52 May 12, 2011 by Gletta
If you look at comments on the previous Saab article the answer to your first question is no Nick.
22:17 May 12, 2011 by RobinHood
Are we close to the end now? Please die Saab. Give the long suffering employees the dignity of earning an honest days pay for making a product people actually want to buy.

There's not a politician in Sweden, nor anyone else, capable of turning Saab cars into sellable products.
23:21 May 12, 2011 by mibrooks27
This is what you can expect when you permit foreign predators to buy up companies. The same future awaits Volvo and every other company with foreign ownership in Sweden. The solution is so obvious that it hardly bear commenting about. Put an end to this globalization nonsense, have the government buy ownership of Volvo, Saab, and every other corporation, or make life so miserable for the foreign owners that they pack up and leave. Companies like Sabb, Erickson, Volvo are the life blood of Sweden and necessary for the national security, the very survival, of this country. Allowing foreign speculators, Chinese and Wall Street sociopaths, to have a say in the future of Sweden is insane.
00:43 May 13, 2011 by jostein
Sad truth is that SAAB never was that profitable a company. They turned a profit up until some point in the 70ies, then a short period in the early 90ies(?). The rest of the time they have been running at a loss. SAAB is a walking corpse and has been for 20 years. Put it out of its misery?

About reinfeldt, i wholeheartedly agree with Jasper2, we made a sad spineless puppy our PM, for whatever reason.
08:59 May 13, 2011 by TheOriginalBlackMan
"About reinfeldt, i wholeheartedly agree with Jasper2, we made a sad spineless puppy our PM, for whatever reason"

Nothing will change here in Sweden and this is as good as it going to get for this country. Sweden the American suburb which I like to call it, needs to think of an alternative con-game. Seems people are starting to realize across the world from people of colour who have lived their or visited that Sweden is not that open of a country or enlightened; case in point: how can a country believe a car company that only able to stay afloat becuase of American tax dollars is worthy of being considered a viable corporation.

SAAB is only the beginning. A lazy people (yes lazy people who are degenrates)who depend on the American / European military to do it's dirty work will eventually realize that the world can never be exploited as it was in the past and that their long sleep goodbye is coming sooner than they think. People of color are taking back their lands and resources. What will people (caucasian pop) poor, land poor and resource poor Sweden do?

The package looks good but the present is a disappointment
09:23 May 13, 2011 by Great Scott

Isn't it logical to say "Of course not" without knowing the facts, just as thick as the statement you wish to criticise. You question the ability of the government to run Saab, many question the ability of the government to run Sweden. You asked that someone should "come up with something that is useful to the discussion", but what did you add, nothing. Isn't "Give SAAB lock, stock and barrel to Von Konensegg" one reasonable suggestion, isn't "as it might keep jobs in Sweden" another valid point.

Good back to Reinfeldt and Olofsson, ask yourself what have this pair done to help the situation? I believe that their lack of support has only added to Saab's problem, it sends out a message to any potential buyer that Saab is not worth having. However I do believe that if Saab had been in Stockholm it would have been a different story, because the government doesn't care about what happens elsewhere in Sweden.
09:38 May 13, 2011 by Rick Methven

You should stop smoking/sniffing/injecting whatever it is you are on, it makes you write bullsh*t
22:32 May 13, 2011 by California Saab Lover
I hope the Swedish government steps in to aid Saab and keep this iconic and independent spirited brand going. The U.S. had to aid GM and Chrysler through this recession too. The people who own BMWs and AUDIs are buying Saabs in California and others are taking note of the high quality of the new Saabs. It will take time to rebuild a large Saab following in the U.S. but that will not be hard if Saab keeps making cars like the new 9-5. I agree that too much interference from outside investment and Wall Street speculation can destroy industries that were once proud national symbols. It happens in the U.S. too. Globalization is not working for the middle class in developed nations. It is creating poverty in the populations of once proud skilled workers as jobs get sent overseas. I have owned many fine brands of automobile and still love my saab the best. Swedes should be proud of their brand and convince the govt. to step forward and see the company through these lean times. Bravo Victor, don't be discouraged, be bold! Your naysayers have never built anything fabulous like you have, and couldn't if they tried.
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