Fiat Might Move its Headquarters to the Netherlands

Newspaper report: Majority owner of Chrysler trying to 'defuse a symbolic war between the two sides of the Atlantic.'

Turin, Italy-based Fiat might move its corporate offices to the Netherlands, in a bid to appease shareholders and pay lower taxes, Italy's Repubblica newspaper reported Friday.

"In order to avoid local quarrels and to save money on taxes, the new company may be set up in the Netherlands," the paper said, referring to the alliance between Fiat and Chrysler.

In February, Fiat boss Sergio Marchionne upset Italians by saying Fiat and Chrysler could be merged within two or three years into a single company, with its headquarters in the United States.

According to Friday's report, the aim of basing the headquarters in the Netherlands would be "not only to obtain fiscal advantages, but also to defuse a symbolic war between the two sides of the Atlantic."

Fiat has been steering Chrysler since it emerged from bankruptcy in June 2009, gradually increasing its share of the No. 3 U.S. automaker to 53.5% after buying out a stake held by the U.S. Treasury.

Marchionne, who is widely respected for his remarkable turnaround of Chrysler, has said the alliance will be "one of the four, five or six players that will ultimately be involved in the car business on the global scale."

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2011

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