Saab is confirming it has received EUR3.4m (US$4.5m) from Chinese manufacturer Youngman in a first step to finding enough liquidity to pay staff salaries and stay in bankruptcy protection.

The Swedish manufacturer is remaining coy the money has been used to pay overdue taxes, but it does say that outstanding liabilities to the State have now been settled.

Saab CEO Victor Muller was with the Swedish National Debt Office (SNDO) yesterday (12 December) and will likely be meeting them again in Stockholm today.

Receipt of the payment should scotch rumours Saab was looking to put itself voluntarily into bankruptcy, although far more finance is needed to pay employees and suppliers, as well as to convince the Vanersborg District Court it should stay in voluntary reorganisation.

"Yesterday it was all about bankruptcy - today money came in," a Saab spokesman told just-auto from Sweden. "We know what is ahead of us and there is a commitment by Youngman - they have shown that commitment today.

"This is the first step and now we are going to the second step, to pull off funds to pay salaries. All the involved parties know exactly what is needed - it is a good sign - they transfer the payments. It means they believe otherwise they would not have done it."

Saab is acutely aware it needs to convince the Court this Thursday (15 December) it has enough funds to settle its immediate outgoings, but also to retain liquidity to meet future costs.

"First of all we will try to stay in reorganisation and have enough funds for the creditors," said the Saab spokesman.

Youngman Saab project director Rachel Pang is now back in China, but other representatives from the manufacturer are in the Swedish capital, where Victor Muller is also today.