Volkswagen will boost its global headcount to 600,000 by 2018 from 550,000 as part of its aim to become the world's biggest carmaker, works council chief Bernd Osterloh told a German newspaper.

"Volkswagen is growing, and is therefore continuing to hire in production," daily Handelsblatt cited Osterloh as saying in an excerpt of an interview to be published on Tuesday.

Volkswagen, which delivered around 9.1 million vehicles last year, has said it hopes to replace Toyota Motor Corp as the world's top-selling carmaker in 2018.

It is banking on growth abroad to offset weak demand for cars in Europe and is working on plans to almost double production capacity in China over the next five years.

Osterloh told Handelsblatt that Volkswagen would add new staff "less in Europe, rather more in China". More than half of Volkswagen's employees already are based outside its German home market.