Mar. 7 - Continental CEO Elmar Degenhart talks about the outlook for the German tyre maker after a difficult start to the year.
-- Dismal car sales in Europe presumably mean dismal time sales to joining me now from Frankfurt Al -- Dayton hot CEO of continent Todd Todd has. I'm -- thanks for talking out with -- what is the upturn coming in Europe to think. Well you're right the current situation is week we see this looking to off fierce. The production figures for the first what I indicating that the market to vote on another 9% compared to the first quarter placed years. But do you expect that during the cause of the year things will get together. Not to talk about a strong recovery. But we will not end up at minus 70 minus 9% view rather expect defeat in the range of minus two minus 32 what's the end of the year. As never reach. How how worried are you find the numbers the recent numbers out of Germany. And his Northern Europe to bring that coming. And in and in the annual market and you crisis and if you like of design. No we don't believe that. The -- -- part of Europe and specifically leave. John in the will move ahead towards a situation where you can. Talk. Both in an extreme recessions case. Crisis situation -- -- how -- from this and on the economic indicators. Are not proving this is dead heading towards the positive trend of the moment. -- -- are confident about this yet and it and indeed the coming years arm. Well -- -- confidence coming from what what is gonna dry continent how sales. Now we heavily investing into the emerging markets. For some -- we are planning to crew -- serious in China. By another 100%. In the next four to five years. We I -- investing into our purpose in replacement business and the tires site. We have excellent opportunities. Talking about new technologies are coming at the horizon. We -- talking very intensively even though customers symbolic automated driving scenario as far as samba and he saw opportunities we have. Proven that he can crew faster than the markets itself in the list before years and I've no doubt that he can do this also in the next future. And I'm just told it was a little bit about the sort of -- what are we gonna see you make more acquisitions by an emerging markets and -- what can we expect more acquisitions from continent towel. And what sorts in size and acquisition could you shoulder right now. Festival via focusing on two subjects. We -- to invest. Into -- show. We will invest into the non though you never know which is a replacement that the placement -- the tires type. In just -- business of quantitative. This rubio a focus this. We have succeeded to reducing net debt to another one point five billion euros. Over the cost of 2000. Twelfth we now -- five point three billion net debt. We've we have been hearing below 60%. And yes we have more flexibility now to think of power -- type of acquisitions. And we are talking about did I mention in the area for one billion euros since. At what what sorry on on the net debt what is New York talkative than this yet you say you mentioned 2012 what about what it that's it. Not maturity and -- target. Another free cash flow of more than 700 million. And we -- use the cash go to further true to pay -- dividend. But also to greet you to would you step further down this is definitely a target. It's sort of finish -- -- raw material prices especially rob -- how how you see. Prices developing this year -- next what is the general trend now. Talking about. And average comparison. Compared to last year. And we believe. That prices who'd you rather steep. Currently you have -- and TV and compared to the first half -- foot whose house and twelve talking about natural -- publicists and Teddy trouble. But we believe that this trend to move slightly up birds and that over the course of the year this will balance out more or less. Okay Al -- thanks very much indeed for talking with Reuters today on -- baking hot the CEO of continent towel. That is it -- from -- IMAX Acropolis is righteous.