Russia is close to creating a new alliance between a domestic car manufacturer and a foreign player, a government minister has said, indicating Oleg Deripaska's GAZ could be in line for a new partner.

Russia's industry and trade minister Viktor Kristenko told state TV the government was working on a second alliance after the partnership between the country's largest automaker, AvtoVAZ , and French peer Renault , although he did not name the company involved.

"Speaking about cars ... we are working on a second alliance in this area, and I think it will see the light in the near future," Kristenko told Vesti 24 TV channel on Monday, according to Reuters.

He added that the enterprise had full Russian production of "hundreds of thousands" of cars, leading analysts to speculate he must be referring to GAZ.

"GAZ [has] capacity of up to 200,000 cars a year but doesn't have the models. The Opel deal collapsed so GAZ needs a new partner," VTB analyst Vladimir Bespalov told Reuters.

A spokesman for GAZ declined to comment.

Debt-laden GAZ, part of the oligarch Deripaska's empire that includes the world's biggest aluminium group UC RUSAL, had been slated to be the industrial partner of Opel had the Russia-backed bid for the unit not collapsed in November.