efe-epaTokyo

The shareholders of Nissan Motor on Tuesday approved the reform of its management to prevent a concentration of power such as that wielded by former chairman, Carlos Ghosn, until last year.

The vote was held at the end of its 120th Ordinary Annual General Meeting of Shareholders in the city of Yokohama, south of Tokyo, and ran for three hours and 22 minutes, the company said in a statement.

Some 2,814 shareholders were present at the meeting, which was broadcast live.

The shareholders approved the creation of three board committees — one responsible for director nominations, another for executive remuneration and one for audit matters.

Eleven new directors were also elected, following the expiration of term of all existing directors, a Nissan statement said.

The approval of the reform had been up in the air for several days as Renault, which holds a 43.4 percent stake in Nissan, had announced it would abstain from the vote, which would have left the proposed changes short of the two-thirds majority needed to pass.

But a subsequent negotiation between Renault and Nissan resulted in the reformulation of the members of the committees to give greater weight to the former, and with the votes of the French automaker, the reform secured the required number of votes.

Present at the meeting was Nissan President Hiroto Saikawa and Renault Chairman Jean-Dominique Senard, who underscored the 20-year alliance of the two companies.

The governance reform is an outcome of the internal review process carried out after Ghosn was dismissed from his Nissan post following his arrest in Tokyo on Nov. 19, 2018.

Ghosn, who was chairman of Renault, Nissan Motor and Mitsubishi Motors, is facing charges for alleged financial irregularities in Japan and is also being investigated in France.

He has denied the charges and claims he was arrested as part of an alleged "conspiracy" by some executives of the Japanese firm over fears that a planned merger of the company with Renault would undermine its autonomy.

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