SEOUL — Looking to exit the automotive sector, Samsung Group is planning to sell its commercial vehicles unit to AB Volvo. The company already is in deep negotiations to sell its passenger car unit to Daewoo Group (see p.3), which is hoping to sell its own commercial vehicles unit.

AB Volvo, which sold its passenger car division to Ford Motor Co. early this year, confirms Samsung is looking to sell the unit to the Swedish company. Samsung says the two companies have been negotiating for two months.

Samsung and Volvo already have ties. The Swedish company purchased Samsung's construction equipment division last year for US$572 million. With the sale of its automotive division, the conglomerate will concentrate on electronics, financing and services, Samsung says.

Volvo, which would not comment further on the possible sale, has said it would like to link up with rival Scania AB. Within the last year, Volvo has purchased 20.3% of Scania voting rights and 21.6% of the truckmaker's capital.

Daewoo also is interested in selling its commercial vehicles division and reportedly is set to start negotiations for the sale with a German company. Korean newspapers report a negotiating team from a major global truckmaker will visit Daewoo in July. Additionally, Scania reportedly may negotiate with Daewoo for part of the truck division.