Louis Schweitzer, Ren-ault chairman, was interviewed in Rome on May 22 by the Italian automotive business press. The following are Schweitzer's answers, edited by Staff Cor-respondent Luca Ciferri.
Is it not merger time?
I have been in the automotive industry for 12 years, and I have seen too many forecasts and predictions which later turned out to be wrong. For this reason, I do not want to add my forecast on which will be the next mega-merger in this industry.
Anyway my personal feeling is that DaimlerChrysler is not going to be the beginning of a mega-merger time. I read, too, that Bob Eaton said there are other 5 or 6 big operations like this on the way, but honestly I am not aware of any of them.
Are you surprised to see Chrysler as the junior partner?
I was really surprised when I was told of Daim-lerChrysler. Of course we knew Chrysler was looking for a partner, but we didn't imagine they were going to become the junior partner within a big merger.