Opel is cutting thousands more jobs

Opel is cutting thousands more jobs

The traditional Car maker Opel has been struggling for decades – and has now announced that it will cut another 2,100 jobs. In return, however, the carmaker is extending employment security for the remaining employees by two years until mid-2025, as the company announced at its headquarters in Rüsselsheim. The assembly plant there is to have additional variants of the compact car Astra including a hybrid model from 2021 in two-shift operation. A corresponding agreement had been made with the general works council.

The job cuts are to be organized again through voluntary programs with partial retirement, early retirement and severance payments. Since the takeover by the French PSA Group In 2017, Opel already cut around 6,800 jobs in this way.

According to information from the general works council, the company has secured further options for job cuts. In two stages, another 20 jobs could be cut in 2022 and 2023. The transformation of the auto industry and the planned merger became express Fiat Chrysler mentioned as possible reasons for further dismantling. Protection against dismissal for the remaining workforce would then be extended – until full use of the program by mid-2029. The agreement applies to the Rüsselsheim, Eisenach and Kaiserslautern plants.

"With the agreement, we are ensuring a further significant improvement in our competitiveness," said Opel CEO Michael Lohscheller. It also gives "our employees long-term security". Criticism of the plans, however, comes from politics. "Employees at Opel must not be held responsible for management mistakes," criticized Klaus Ernst, the spokesman for the left-wing parliamentary group in the left-wing parliament. "Even a socially acceptable downsizing designed in agreement with the union will not secure the future of the group in the long term."

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