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On 29 October the union IG Metall announced a protest action in its Mitte district, which includes the four federal states of Hesse, Rhineland-Palatinate, Saarland and Thringen. Thringen’s economic affairs minister, Wolfgang Tiffens (SPD), also warned on Friday against outsourcing the plants and stressed compliance with contracts and commitments.
“There is still a lack of clarity about what and how. Based on what is known, I am already speaking out against this path,” declared Tiffens in Erfurt. “Stellantis and thus Opal are strong in the network.” The plant in Eisenach can already produce for all Stelantis brands, but the law does not require such a change.
The minister said, given the uncertainty among customers, employees and the public, he recommends “immediately to put an end to these considerations and instead move to stabilizing production and consolidating the location as soon as possible”. Huh.” Eisenach’s Opel has 1,300 employees who are on less than Monday’s work hours. Thringer Factory was its own limited liability company for almost a decade.
Eisenach IG Metal representative Uwe Laubach told DPA “the uncertainty is unbearable”. After the Eisenach Opel plant ceased production due to a lack of electronic components by the end of the year, the workforce’s confidence in the group management was damaged anyway. Now a concept has to be put on the table as to how things will continue on January 1.
IG Metal in Frankfurt announced: “With the planned break-up, the Opel parent company is jeopardizing the entire brand, locations and employment as well as co-determination structures. Staff representatives will not accept this without resistance.” “
Uwe Baum, chairman of the Opal General Works Council, insisted that the announcement did not follow any economic logic. “Rather, it is an attempt to avoid co-decisions. The sole purpose of breaking up is to undermine successful co-decisions in Germany.” According to their own statements, IG Metal and the works councils do not know what the conversion plan for Opel should look like.
As “Handelsblatt” reported on Thursday evening, a company spokesperson announced upon request that Stelantis was considering developing the two production sites into their own legal and production organizations. “Collaboration and flexibility within the Stellantis production network” should be further strengthened. The move should help secure jobs in the long term.
This will be achieved through, among other things, a simpler product allocation through the independence of the plants and the implementation of more efficient solutions on site. The spokesman stressed that the Eisenach plant was already independent from 1990 to the end of 2013. Rsselsheim is the headquarters of the traditional opal brand.
“Of course, working conditions for all employees should remain unchanged, with existing collective bargaining agreements and work agreements continuing to apply. We would now like to talk to the social partner about the exact structure,” a group spokesperson said.
According to “Handelsblatt” information, the leadership around Stelantis boss Carlos Tavares is considering separating production facilities in Russellsheim and Eisenach from Opel Automobile GmbH and transferring them to independent companies. According to the plans, the two companies will no longer be linked to Opel in Germany, but directly to a Stelantis unit, for example in the Netherlands.
Shares of Stellantis on Euronext closed 0.55 percent higher at 16.676 euros.
RSSELSHEIM / EISENACH (dpa-AFX)
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