Opel cutting up to 4,100 jobs amid slowdown

MUNICH • PSA Group's German carmaking division Opel plans to cut as many as 4,100 jobs, according to a person familiar with the matter, joining automakers around the globe in retrenching amid a sales slowdown and technological disruption.

Opel will eliminate at least 2,100 positions by 2025 and could take measures to slash another 1,000 workers twice in two-year increments through 2029, said the person, who asked not to be identified ahead of an official announcement.

The carmaker was to brief employees yesterday, the person said.

The 4,100 jobs would represent about 14 per cent of Opel's workforce of roughly 30,000 employees.

A spokesman for PSA declined to comment. PSA shares slipped 0.2 per cent at 9.08am in Paris.

While PSA breathed life into Opel after acquiring it from General Motors in 2017, German brands have been struggling to prove they are ready to meet stricter emissions standards, which are almost impossible to meet without electric cars.

Transitioning from the internal combustion engine that Germany invented could be taxing for its economy because plug-in cars require fewer parts and less labour to build.

Carmakers are eliminating more than 80,000 jobs during the coming years, according to data Bloomberg News compiled last month.

PSA announced plans late last year to merge with Italian-American carmaker Fiat Chrysler Automobiles and has said no plants will close as a result of the deal.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 15, 2020, with the headline 'Opel cutting up to 4,100 jobs amid slowdown'. Print Edition | Subscribe