04:32 - Source: CNN
Nissan moves Infiniti HQ to Hong Kong

Story highlights

Nissan Motor Company moved its global headquarters for its luxury Infiniti line to Hong Kong

Comes after the company announced plans to relaunch the Datsun brand for emerging markets

CEO Carlos Ghosn said the company will continue to offshore production outside of Japan

"How can you compete with the yen at 80 yen to the dollar when the historic level has been 110?"

Hong Kong CNN —  

Months after announcing the reintroduction of the low-cost Datsun brand – to be assembled in Indonesia – Nissan Motor Company on Tuesday moved its global headquarters for its luxury Infiniti line to Hong Kong to be closer to the red-hot Chinese luxury market.

The common denominator between both moves: Building production and customer base outside the Japanese market, as export-driven companies have been hammered by the high value of the yen.

Nissan produces about 20% of its cars in Japan, but CEO Carlos Ghosn would like to see that reduced.

“We’re going to continue to do that (offshore production), obviously, because how can you compete with the yen at 80 yen to the dollar when the historic level has been 110 (yen to the dollar)?” Ghosn told CNN’s Andrew Stevens. “We cannot compete against Korean makes or other competitors.”

The yen hit record high of 75.93 yen to the U.S. dollar in October and remains stubbornly strong, hovering around the 79.45 yen to the dollar this week.

“I’m still not happy because of the strength of the yen. The strength of the yen is a penalty for Japan,” Ghosn said. “I don’t think it’s so much a penalty