KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) -- Malaysia's government said Wednesday it may not be able to finalize a foreign alliance for national car maker Proton by the end of March as previously expected.
"I cannot say for sure," Deputy Prime Minister Najib Razak told reporters in response to a question on whether the government would announce Proton's new partner by March 31.
Proton has been considering partnerships with either Volkswagen AG and General Motors Corp. after the recent pullout of France's PSA Peugeot.
Treasury and trade ministry officials have not presented the necessary evaluation to a Cabinet committee handling the issue, Najib said.
Proton last month reported its consecutive straight quarterly loss, and analysts say a foreign strategic partnership that can provide Proton with technology and access to the international market is crucial for its long-term survival.
Peugeot said earlier this month it called off talks about possible industrial collaboration with Proton, saying the "right conditions for a successful project weren't in place."