VW trucks division targets significant profitability gain in 2017

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The Volkswagen logo is seen during the 87th International Motor Show at Palexpo in Geneva, Switzerland, March 7, 2017. REUTERS/Denis Balibouse (Copyright Reuters 2017)

Volkswagen's truck division is targeting a significant increase in profitability this year as it benefits from rising demand in Europe and China and a slight rebound in the key Brazilian market, its finance chief said.

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After years of slumping demand for heavy-duty trucks and buses in Brazil, there is a possibility that growth will accelerate there next year, Matthias Gruendler told journalists on Monday.

The division, which also includes heavy-duty commercial vehicle brands MAN and Sweden's Scania, has a long-term operating margin target of 9 percent compared with 6.1 percent last year, chief executive Andreas Renschler said.

(Reporting by Andreas Cremer and Irene Preisinger; Editing by Maria Sheahan)