Renault is selling its remaining stake in AB Volvo and will use the proceeds to reduce debt and make investments both in France and internationally.

The French carmaker said the 6.5 pc shareholding in the Swedish truck maker is being sold through a private placement in Sweden and elsewhere. The stake represents 17.2 pc of the voting rights in AB Volvo.

In 2010, Renault already sold a 14.90 pc stake - representing 3.8 pc of the voting rights. Renault acquired its AB Volvo shareholding in 2001 and following the latest divestment will no longer have any interests in AB Volvo.

Renault's investment plans for 2013 will focus in particular on Russia and China, which it said in a press release "will constitute new opportunities for growth that will strengthen the group."

The company announced earlier this week that it planned to invest 366 million dlrs in a new joint venture - Alliance Rostec Auto BV - with the Russian Technologies holding company. Renault's Japanese alliance partner Nissan will invest another 376 million dlrs. Together, the Renault-Nissan alliance will hold 67.13 pc of the new joint venture by June 2014.

Alliance Rostec will be the main shareholder of Avtovaz, Russia's largest automotive group. Renault acquired a 25 pc stake in Avtovaz in 2008 and sees further development of the carmaker as key to its Russian growth strategy.

"The joint venture will help accelerate our Russian market offensive," said Carlos Ghosn, who heads both Renault and Nissan. "It will support the competitiveness of Avtovaz, Russia's auto industry leader."