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Fuji Heavy to Pursue China Deal to Year End, President Says

Feb. 3 (Bloomberg) -- Fuji Heavy Industries Ltd., a Japanese carmaker seeking an alliance with Chery Automobile Co. in China, will pursue a deal until the end of this fiscal year to expand in the world’s largest car market.

“We’ll pursue the possibility of beginning production in China until the end of this fiscal year,” President Yasuyuki Yoshinaga told reporters today in Tokyo.

Fuji Heavy, 16 percent owned by Toyota Motor Corp., has said its plan to tie up with Chery must win regulatory approval in China. Toyota already has two partnerships in the country, the maximum under foreign investment rules.

The maker of Subaru cars and sport-utility vehicles expects 2012 global sales to grow 13 percent to a record 700,000 units, including 320,000 in the United States, according to a statement the company released today. Global vehicle production may rise 20 percent to a record 698,000 units in the year, the company said.

The automaker also raised its forecast for annual profit because of better-than-expected sales of its Impreza model in the U.S. and the XV in China, it said in the statement.

Net income will probably be 41 billion yen in the year ending March 31, 14 percent higher than the company’s previous forecast. Profit was 50.3 billion yen in the previous year.

Fuji Heavy fell 1.7 percent to 528 yen at the close of trading in Tokyo.

To contact the reporter on this story: Anna Mukai in Tokyo at amukai1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Young-Sam Cho at ycho2@bloomberg.net

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