GM/Opel Drama Continues, Plans Called ‘Questionable’

Not surprisingly, GM’s plan to reduce the number of people working at Opel as part of its restructuring efforts isn’t sitting well with the German economy ministry. According to Spiegel magazine, the ministry wants GM to pay for more of the brand’s plan.

Earlier this week, we brought you the news that GM’s five-year restructuring plan was to cost $15 billion and force 8300 people out of work. In these tough global conditions, the plan also involved trimming 20-percent of the company’s capacity and refreshing 80-percent of Opel’s lineup.

Spiegel magazine said the viability of the plan was “questionable,” according to Automotive News. Part of GM’s turnaround plans include requests of about $3.7 billion in aid from countries with Opel factories like Britain, Spain, Poland, Austria, and Germany. One plant being closed is the one in Antwerp, Belgium, which has built 13 million vehicles since it opened in 1925.

“Some of the actions we need to take are unfortunate and tough, but the reality is that we have to act,” said Opel CEO Nick Reilly in a statement earlier this month.

A representative from Germany’s Economy Ministry has asked that GM pay for more than the 600 million euros of the 3.3 billion euros (or about $818 million of $4.5 billion) expected to run Opel during the next five years.

Source: GM, Automotive News (Subscription required)