GM GAMBLING WITH WORKERS JOBS – say EU trade unions

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A Joint statement by the European Employee Forum of General Motors (EEF), the European Metalworkers‚ Federation (EMF) and the European Unions was issued yesterday on the current meeting of the GM Board of Directors.

They are deeply concerned that GM’s strategy regarding the sale of Opel may lead all European workers into yet another blind alley exactly as it did some months ago.

‘The taxpayers’ money that enabled us to avoid bankruptcy was provided to overcome a limited situation and to make sure that workers, as well as suppliers continued to receive their wages and salaries while the constitution of a new company was being developed.

‘It was not provided in order for GM to gamble with the different bidders, taking care of its own interest and ignoring the position of the workers.

‘What we are now witnessing is GM wasting time and money by once more delaying the final decision with an incomprehensible strategy.

‘The EEF, EMF and the European Unions strongly oppose any further delay of the Opel/Vauxhall sale because it could put Opel/Vauxhall at risk of bankruptcy and the needed approval of the future business/restructuring plan by the EU-Commission.

‘Therefore, the EEF, the EMF and the European Unions ask that the General Motors Board of Directors agree to the recommendation of a new owner at its current meeting that can then be put to the Opel Trust Advisory Board which has the final say.

‘The EEF, EMF and the European Unions are convinced that a decision on the Opel/Vauxhall sale at the ongoing meeting that commenced today, September 8th, is in the common interest of General Motors, Opel/Vauxhall and its European workforce.

‘After the decision on owner is made, negotiations between Management and the European unions, the EEF and EMF will have to take place.

‘The EEF, EMF and the European Unions emphasize their common position that any negotiations involving the European Unions, the EEF and EMF must be based on a sustainable business plan which has to meet certain goals:’

The most important demands of the European Unions, the EEF and EMF are for no plant closures and no compulsory redundancies.’

There has been no statement by Unite, the main union in the UK’s GM factories.