In this file photo, a man works on an assembly line at the Renault SA car factory near Paris. Photo: Reuters

The French government on Sunday dismissed talk of a merger between Renault and Nissan, despite Japanese media reports that France was pursuing it.

Earlier on Sunday, Japanese media said France is seeking a merger between Renault and Nissan following the arrest of former Nissan boss Carlos Ghosn on charges of financial misconduct.

“The subject is not on the table today. What is on the table today is the governance of Renault,” French Economy Minister Bruno Le Maire told journalists during a visit to Cairo.

“The most important thing for us is to have solid, stable, sustainable governance for Renault,” said Le Maire.

This should be put in place by Renault’s board of directors in the coming days, he added.

The French government is the biggest shareholder in Renault with a stake of more than 15%, while Renault owns 43.4% of the Japanese car manufacturer Nissan with voting rights.

The Tokyo-based Kyodo News reported that the merger request was made by a delegation including Martin Vial – a Renault director designated by the French government – during talks with Japanese officials in Tokyo.

Kyodo said French President Emmanuel Macron was in favor of the merger.

– with reporting by Agence France-Presse

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