Opel to Launch Exports to Chile in 2011

It's the company's first attempt to break into the Latin American market.

Opel, a General Motors subsidiary sold almost exclusively in Europe, said on Sept. 22 that it would launch exports to Chile next year. It is the company's first attempt to break into the Latin American market.

Opel "will have direct business control over a dedicated Opel team that will be supported by GM Chile," a statement said.

The decision "is concrete proof that the brand is on course with its plan for the future," a strategy that will involve a focus on other growth markets as well, it added.

Opel has already announced a memorandum of understanding with the Israeli group Schlomo to export cars to Israel.

The European automaker has suffered from its concentration in Europe, where sales growth rates lag behind those of emerging economies.

GM, which was going to sell Opel but ended up hanging onto the brand, does not want the unit to create too much competition for Buick and Chevrolet, two of the group's other nameplates to survive a radical restructuring last year.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2010

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