Opel in talks with 17 possible buyers of Belgium plant: union chief

21st May 2010, Comments 0 comments

German automaker Opel is in talks with 17 investors interested in its plant in Antwerp, Belgium, which will otherwise be closed by September, the head of GM Europe's works committee said on Friday.

"I am convinced we will find a solution with investors," Klaus Franz told a press conference held in Ruesselsheim, western Germany along with GM Europe chief executive Nick Reilly.

Franz said 17 investors from the auto sector that he declined to name had shown "great interest" in taking over the site.

Opel has set a deadline of September 30 to find a buyer for the site, which could be cut down in size, with Opel retaining a minority shareholding.

Failing that, the plant is to be closed by the end of the year.

The subsidiary of US auto maker General Motors said Friday it had reached an agreement with European unions on a long-awaited restructuring plan.

Workers have agreed to savings worth 265 million euros (333 million dollars) per year as part of a package that would also include 8,300 job cuts from a total of nearly 50,000 in Europe.

Belgium is to pay a heavy price because it will lose the only Opel factory in the country, along with 2,600 jobs.

GM plans to spend 1.9 billion euros to turn Opel around but seeks another 1.8 billion euros in loan guarantees from European countries where its remaining plants are located.

© 2010 AFP

0 Comments To This Article