Major job losses at Opel Antwerp
13 April 2007
BRUSSELS – Though there is now a little bit less of a chance that car manufacturer Opel in Antwerp will have to close its doors, there is a good chance that about 1,200 jobs will have to be scrapped by 2010.
There will be jobs for only 3,200 of the 4,474 currently employed at the plant in three years’ time. Unions said this after a meeting with management of Opel’s parent company General Motors.
The unions and the management of GM Europe met in Germany to look into how to solve overcapacity of the Astra model being produced at the moment. The Astra is being produced in Antwerp and other plants.
“We made a few proposals to the management and they are going to look into them before our next meeting,” said Rudi Kennes of socialist trade union ABVV. Kennes is also the deputy chairman of the European works council at GM. “We made it very clear that there is no economic basis whatsoever for closing down a GM plant in Europe,” Kennes said.
The management seemed to agree, because after the meeting the trade unions had the impression that “there is a good chance that no closure of Antwerp would be announced during the meeting of the Economic Committee in Brussels next Tuesday,” Kennes said.
[Copyright Expatica News 2007]
Subject: Belgian news