Struggling Peugeot-Citroen slashing 8,000 jobs in France
The New Peugeot 208 is shown, during the press day at the 82nd Geneva International Motor Show in Geneva, Switzerland, Tuesday, March 6, 2012. (AP Photo/Keystone/Sandro Campardo)
Published Thursday, July 12, 2012 6:32AM EDT
Last Updated Thursday, July 12, 2012 6:34AM EDT
PARIS -- Struggling French carmaker PSA Peugeot-Citroen announced Thursday a drastic cost-cutting plan to slash 8,000 jobs in France and close a factory north of Paris, as it faces diving sales in crisis-hit southern Europe.
Union members vowed to try to fight back and plan protests later Thursday.
Company management announced the job cuts and closure plan during a meeting Thursday with its worker representatives.
The company, which warns it faces a first-half loss of C700 million ($858.2 million) this year, is trying to save C1 billion as it struggles to compete in Europe's fiercely competitive car market. It is suffering particularly amid a slump in sales in the recession-hit south of Europe. Its sales plunged 20 per cent in Europe in the first quarter.
The restructuring plan includes the closure of Peugeot-Citroen's Aulnay-sous-Bois factory, one of the biggest car plants in France and seen as a bastion of car-making and of autoworkers' unions.
The company will also cut 1,400 jobs at its Rennes factory and 3,600 jobs in other French sites.
CEO Philippe Varin, grim-faced, told reporters that the company is losing about C100 million per month. "No one will be left along the side of the road," he pledged:
The company is hoping a new alliance with General Motors Corp. will allow it to return to long-term profitability.
"It's no longer possible to continue to lose jobs like this. We have to come together to make the management back down," said CGT union member Jean-Pierre Mercier, who was present at Thursday's works council meeting.