News Worms
News Worms


Unite leader warns GM the union won't accept any Vauxhall job losses

The German economy minister Brigitte Zypries said unions should have been informed of the talks sooner, while Unite boss Len McCluskey has called on the British government to protect jobs.

'A PSA spokesman confirmed that the company was in talks with the US carmaker to deepen their partnership, ' Reuters said on Tuesday.

Shares in France's PSA Group jumped after news it was talking about a merger with GM Europe's Opel-Vauxhall, but this proposition has been mooted in the past and failed.

PSA Group's proposal to buy General Motors Co.'s Opel brand quickly ran into a potential hurdle in Germany, with politicians and labor leaders vowing to protect jobs and the unit's manufacturing footprint in the country. Its future was only assured after the then business secretary Vince Cable flew to the United States to reassure GM bosses that the government was committed to the vehicle industry.

A combination would create a manufacturer with about 16 percent of the European vehicle market, pushing past Renault SA to become the region's second-biggest auto group after Volkswagen AG. Selling to PSA is a lower risk in that sense because the two companies already share some engine and chassis technology.

The move would see the French firm take control of GM brands Vauxhall and Opel and mark a complete withdrawal from Europe by General Motors, who announced a $257m (£206m) pre-tax loss from its European operations in 2016. The combination would be second only to Volkswagen, with 23.9 percent, and would vault ahead of the Renault-Nissan alliance, which had 13.9 percent. "This is my clear expectation regarding General Motors".

The negotiations revolve around full merger of operations between Opel, Vauxhall, Citroen, Peugeot and DS, and come after previous attempts to closely align the operations of the German and French auto makers. A spokesman for the Peugeot family, which holds a matching stake in the carmaker, was not immediately available.

Selling Opel and Vauxhall, which added nearly one million cars to its sales, could mean abandoning the global volume race in which it is ranked third behind Volkswagen and Toyota, with just over 10 million vehicles delivered past year.

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