Marchionne Tells Monti Fiat Wants to Boost Exports From Italy

Fiat SpA, the Italian automaker that controls Chrysler Group LLC, wants to strengthen its position in the export market as it commits to investing in Italy, Prime Minister Mario Monti’s office said today.

Fiat wants to “re-orient its business model” in Italy to help boost exports outside Europe, Monti’s office said in an e-mailed statement after the premier met with Fiat Chief Executive Officer Sergio Marchionne in Rome.

Fiat has suspended investments in Italy, reducing spending by 500 million euros ($650 million) in Europe in 2012 and delaying new models, as Marchionne has said he doesn’t expect sales to recover in the region before 2014 at the earliest. Turin-based Fiat, Italy’s biggest manufacturer, said Sept. 18 that it won’t give up on its home market, even as the carmaker is set to lose 700 million euros in Europe this year.

The government and Fiat agreed to keep talking during the next few weeks to find “conditions to strengthen the company’s competitive capacity,” the statement said.

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