Photo/IllutrationHiroto Saikawa, center, CEO of Nissan Motor Co., speaks at a news conference in Tokyo on March 12 with Renault SA Chairman Jean-Dominique Senard, left. (Asahi Shimbun file photo)

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Nissan Motor Co. is expected to relent and allow two top executives of its largest shareholder, Renault SA, to join new committees to overhaul the carmaker’s management structure, sources said.

Nissan is weighing the option in light of the arrest late last year of former chairman Carlos Ghosn for alleged financial misconduct and aggravated breach of trust, as well as a threat by Renault to abstain from voting on setting up three key committees at a general shareholder meeting slated for June 25.

Nissan plans to set up three committees, each to oversee executive nominations, compensation and audit, in efforts to revamp the company’s governance.

Nissan initially planned to select Renault Chairman Jean-Dominique Senard to the committee of nominations, but not Renault CEO Thierry Bollore, whose appointment to a Nissan board member is expected to be approved at the shareholder meeting on June 25.

Renault, which has a 43-percent stake in Nissan, reacted strongly to the automaker's plan to nominate only Senard, fearing it would weaken its influence over Nissan.

Senard notified Nissan in writing that Renault plans to abstain from voting if the French company's representation at the committees is limited.

It now seems likely that Renault’s two top executives will sit on at least two of the three committees.

In a related development, Nissan decided to name Yasushi Kimura, adviser to leading oil distributor JXTG Holdings Inc., as the chair of Nissan's board of directors, a post that could have significant impact on the course of the company’s efforts to overhaul its operations, sources said.

Kimura is expected to win the nod to become an external director at the shareholder meeting.

His official appointment as chairman of the board will come later.

Kimura is highly experienced as a manager, having formerly served as chairman of JXTG Holdings, president of its subsidiary and vice chairman of Keidanren (Japan Business Federation), the nation’s most powerful business lobby.

Renault is not opposed to Kimura taking the post of chairman of the Nissan board, sources said.