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Ghosn Blames Macron for Turning Japan Against Him Before Arrest

  • Former auto titan says Macron riled Japanese with Renault play
  • Renault’s alliance with Nissan is critical for French industry
Carlos Ghosn speaks to the media at the Lebanese Press Syndicate in Beirut, Lebanon, on Jan. 8.
Carlos Ghosn speaks to the media at the Lebanese Press Syndicate in Beirut, Lebanon, on Jan. 8.Photographer: Hasan Shaaban/Bloomberg

Carlos Ghosn says it was President Emmanuel Macron who set in motion the train of events that led to his downfall.

The former CEO of Renault SA and Nissan Motor Co. pointed the finger at Macron, blaming the French leader for angering executives and officials in Japan by trying to lock Nissan into its alliance with Renault two years ago. While the president was never named, it was clear that was who Ghosn was alluding to when he hinted that the government asked him to push through a full merger of the two automakers against his will.

Macron was far from the only target of Ghosn’s wrath at his first press conference since escaping from Japan. The main focus of his attacks were Japanese prosecutors, Nissan executives and the carmaker’s lawyers, Latham & Watkins. But when he sought to explained the origins of the alleged plot against him, it was the French president he held responsible.