Fiat Needs Up to 7 Billion Euros to Form Europe's Biggest Automaker

Fiat is slowly but surely becoming one of the world's biggest automakers and, even if it finally formed the over-discussed strategic alliance with Chrysler, it is now aiming to purchase the German brand Opel. Although reports claiming a potential Fiat - Opel agreement have been initially denied by Italian officials, CEO Sergio Marchionne this week travelled to Berlin to discuss the deal but a decision is yet to be announced.

But an interesting news surfaced today. According to a report by Reuters, Germany's economy minister admitted the Italian automaker will need full support to fulfill its ambitious plans, especially from European governments involved in the deal.

However, creating Europe's biggest carmaker is far from being affordable, as Fiat would need between 5 an 7 billion euros in financial support from governments, Economy Minister Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg told the aforementioned source.

Speaking of Fiat's Opel takeover plans, zu Guttenberg revealed after a meeting with Sergio Marchionne that German production facilities will be safe in case the deal goes through, with a single exception: the Kaiserslautern part factory might undergo a series of cost-cutting measures but details are still sketchy at this point.

On the other hand, in an interview for German newspaper Bild, Sergio Marchionne said that Fiat would cut jobs at Opel plants in the country but emphasized that a final decision is yet to be announced.

"We don't want to close any of the four Opel factories in Germany. I will need the plants in the future to build enough cars," Marchionne said. "But of course staff levels have to fall. No one will be able to change that. The plants have to become more efficient."
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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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