Nissan Motor on Monday strongly refuted media suggestions of a conspiracy within the automaker to oust former chairman Carlos Ghosn.
Reuters noted the 2018 arrest of Ghosn in Japan on financial misconduct charges had led to much speculation that the move was orchestrated by Nissan executives who opposed closer ties with Alliance partner Renault.
"I know that in books and the media there has been talk about a conspiracy but there are no facts whatsoever to support this," Motoo Nagai, chairman of Nissan's auditing committee, told shareholders at the company's annual general meeting in Japan.
Responding to demands from a shareholder to address the speculation, Nagai argued the investigation into Ghosn was conducted both internally and by outside law firms.
Reuters reported Monday's meeting lasted almost two hours – twice as long as planned – as shareholders grilled chief executive Makoto Uchida on how he planned to restore trust in the company following the Ghosn scandal, and revive sales in the United States and China.
Uchida, who took the helm in December, told shareholders he would stick to his promise to step down as leader if he failed to deliver on a turnaround plan for the automaker which last month reported its first annual loss in 11 years.
To slash costs and downsize after years of excessive spending on market share, Nissan plans to cut its model range by about a fifth and reduce production capacity, clsoing plants in Spain and Indonesia and laying off workers in countries including Mexico.
It now aims to sell 5m vehicles a year, far fewer than past ambitions of 8m, Reuters reported.