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Renault to set up R&D center in Busan

May 22, 2023 - 15:31 By Byun Hye-jin
From left: Kim Hyeong-gyun, head of Busan Techno Park, Lee Im-geon, head of Korean University Council Research and Industry Academic Cooperation Administrator, Busan City Mayor Park Hyeong-joon, Renault Korea Motors CEO Stephane Deblaise and Oh Lin-tae, head of Busan Automobile Parts Cooperative, pose after the signing ceremony held at Eurasia Platform in the Busan Station on Monday. (Renault Korea Motors)

Renault Korea Motors said Monday it is setting up a research and development center in the southern port city of Busan, aiming to expand its presence as a strategic export base for the French auto giant.

The carmaker signed a memorandum of understanding with the Busan city government and industrial and academic institutions there to join hands in creating an ecosystem for eco-friendly vehicles.

Renault Korea Motors CEO Stephane Deblaise, Busan City Mayor Park Hyeong-joon and other officials participated in the signing ceremony that took place at Eurasia Platform in the Busan Station.

The upcoming R&D center, named the Eco Cluster Center, will be built within the carmaker’s Busan plant where it will seek cooperation with universities, research institutions and parts manufacturers in hiring local talent and creating synergy among the various parties.

The latest partnership is part of the joint announcement made by Renault Korea and Busan City in September 2021, under which the two agreed to join hands in nurturing the city’s clean car industry as its core business area.

“The company will make sure Eco Cluster Center contributes to accelerating the city’s transition toward eco-friendly transportation,” Deblaise, the Renault Korea CEO, said in a statement. “We have high hopes for government-led policy support to speed up the city’s future clean car industry.”

The city government said it is also in talks with Renault Korea to transform its Busan plant into the French carmaker’s export base of midsized and larger vehicles.

Under a new car project, named Aurora, Renault Korea aims to launch a brand-new hybrid SUV in 2024 in partnership with China-based Geely Motors.