October 9, 2017 / 2:44 PM / a year ago

Fiat Chrysler pushes back on consolidation with China's Great Wall

FILE PHOTO: Fiat Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne answers questions from the media during the FCA Investors Day at the Chrysler World Headquarters in Auburn Hills, Michigan, U.S., on May 6, 2014. REUTERS/Rebecca Cook/File Photo

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCHA.MI) Chief Executive Officer Sergio Marchionne said on Monday he was not sure consolidation with China’s Great Wall Motor Co Ltd was the answer, pushing back against the Chinese automaker’s earlier expressed interest in his company.

Speaking to reporters, Marchionne said there were “sensitive issues associated with trans-national mergers,” and he did not believe those issues had been thoroughly thought through between the two automakers.

In August, Great Wall made a direct overture to FCA to acquire part of the Italian-American auto company, with a special interest in FCA’s Jeep brand.

While Marchionne has said in the past that he wants to find a partner or buyer for the world’s seventh-largest automaker as costs rise, he said aggregation with Great Wall would be difficult as the two companies do not overlap in terms of market or products.

Asked whether FCA would sell Jeep as a separate unit, Marchionne said that option was not being considered.

Reporting by Alana Wise; Editing by Bernadette Baum

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