Works Councils Criticize Opel And GM

Table of contents:

Works Councils Criticize Opel And GM
Works Councils Criticize Opel And GM

Video: Works Councils Criticize Opel And GM

Video: Works Councils Criticize Opel And GM
Video: WRAP Opel workers protest GM's decision not to sell to Magna 2023, October

The European works council with representatives from seven countries has sharply criticized the management of Opel and General Motors. In view of the threat of plant closings, the locations would be played off against each other.

After speculation about site closings at the loss-making car manufacturer Opel, the European works council has raised serious allegations against the management. The management is trying to play the locations off against each other and is particularly putting the employee representatives in individual plants under brutal pressure, according to a joint letter from the employee representatives from seven European countries.

Schäfer-Klug criticizes inadequate information

Led by the head of the general works council, Wolfgang Schäfer-Klug, the European Workers' Forum (EEF) and the European Metalworkers Federation (EMB) called on management to hold constructive talks "immediately". The employees would finally have to be fully informed about a realistic business plan by 2016: "Opel and GM are currently refusing to hold such discussions and relying on the" divide and rule "method."

The Opel management tried on Monday to keep the ball flat. "We will not participate in speculation. We are working on the necessary strategies and will provide information as soon as there is something to be communicated," said Rüsselsheim.

Instead of adding fuel to the fire, the carmaker referred to jointly expressed goals by management and works council: "We are assuming that the assessment shared by employers and employees that Opel must work profitably even in times of deteriorating general conditions will continue to apply Has." Because despite the deep cuts in recent years, Opel continues to make high losses. Sales are also suffering greatly from the weak demand from the southern European crisis countries.

The Rhineland-Palatinate Minister of Economic Affairs, Eveline Lemke (Greens), praised the modern systems during a visit to the Opel plant in Kaiserslautern, but also indirectly appealed to the carmaker to continue investing. "Anyone who stops in the automotive industry falls behind," she said, according to the announcement. "That is why I welcome the ambitious plans to position the plant well for the future. I would like Opel to provide the necessary investment funds for this in order to secure jobs in the long term." The state government will accompany the plant on this path.

Speculation harmful to the image

At Opel, speculation about a new shrinking cure has long been circulating again. New savings plans are being forged behind the scenes. Again and again there has recently been speculation about the end of the Bochum or Ellesmere Port (England) locations. Opel boss Karl-Friedrich Stracke recently did not rule out this possibility in front of journalists.

The European Workers' Forum stated that the employee representatives had asked the board of directors of Adam Opel AG and the representatives of the parent company General Motors (GM) several times to enter into negotiations in order to find solutions together. The works council also wants to develop a growth plan for Europe and the large global markets outside Europe. Because the company still lacks the opportunity to compensate for declines in sales in Europe through exports to other regions, the works councils complained: "We therefore consider the refusal of discussions to be irresponsible."

The constant speculation about cuts, plant closings or further downsizing are detrimental to the image of the car manufacturer, complained the workers: "Employees in all European locations in particular suffer from this uncertainty. Potential customers are also considerably unsettled in an economic environment that is already in crisis."

Opel has been in the red for years. In view of the poor development of the European car market, Opel boss Stracke has now also abandoned the goal of soon leading the manufacturer into profitability. Opel sales in the first two months of 2012 are also little cause for euphoria. While the Western European car market lost 7.8 percent in the first two months compared to the previous year, sales of Opel and Vauxhall plummeted by 19.9 percent, according to the European industry association Acea. The market share shrank from 6.9 percent to 6.0 percent.

Meanwhile, Stracke is continuing to reorganize the management of the car manufacturer. According to information from the "Financial Times Deutschland" (Tuesday edition), he brings VW manager Alfred Rieck as the new sales director. Stracke had last held the post in personal union after the previous Marketing Director Alain Visser had switched to Chevrolet within the GM group. According to the newspaper, Rieck was last president of the Skoda brand in China.

Opel boss Stracke had last assured at the Geneva Motor Show that the company would stand by the contracts concluded with the unions. They exclude plant closings and compulsory layoffs until 2014. (AG / dpa)