600 Spanish Opel Workers Temporarily Fired

Even if they marched against Magna's projected job cuts, several Spanish workers are going to be laid off temporarily as a broader attempt of General Motors to align production with market demand. The US-based carmaker however assures that this is only a temporary layoff and it has nothing in common with Magna's plans.

The decision will come into effect in November and will last until March 2010, a GM spokeswoman was quoted as saying by AFP. The Zaragoza plant is building Corsa and Meriva and is currently employing 7,000 workers.

As we said, Spanish Opel workers protested last week against Magna's job cutting plans which, according to some estimates, are pointing to a 1,700 job layoff when the Canadian - Austrian partsmaker will complete the takeover deal. Local politicians and union representatives joined Opel's employees from the Figueruelas, Zaragoza production plant as they marched through the streets of the city carrying banners and messages for Magna International.

A more difficult situation takes place in Belgium where Magna might close the doors of the Antwerp plant. Workers from Germany and other countries traveled to Belgium last week to support their local counterparts and show their disagreement towards Magna's planned layoffs.

"We all see the need for restructuring and capacity adjustments, but every job has a face that goes along with it and we want to do this in a socially acceptable way -- no plant closures and no forced layoffs," Opel union boss Klaus Franz said after the protests. "Opel's labor appeals to each European country not to encumber the talks with nationalistic interests."
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About the author: Bogdan Popa
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Bogdan keeps an eye on how technology is taking over the car world. His long-term goals are buying an 18-wheeler because he needs more space for his kid’s toys, and convincing Google and Apple that Android Auto and CarPlay deserve at least as much attention as their phones.
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