20,000 Volkswagen Workers Stop in Brazil to Protest Cuts

More than 20,000 workers in Brazil walked off their jobs, halting assembly lines at the three Volkswagen Brazilian factories – two in the southeastern state of São Paulo and one in the southern state of Paraná – that have a combined daily output of 2,500 vehicles.  

The company declined to comment on the amount of lost revenue the strike is expected to cause.

Unions representing autoworkers at the three plants say Volkswagen intends to fire close to 6,000 workers as part of a plan to cut labor costs by 25%.

Volkswagen has declined to say how many jobs will be cut but the company has acknowledged that the plan, announced in early May, includes the dismissal of "thousands of workers."

In announcing the cost-cutting plan the subsidiary’s president Han-Christian Maergner said that a 25% reduction in labor costs did not necessarily translate into a 25% reduction in the company’s work force.

Workers at Volkswagen’s truck- and bus-production plant in the state of Rio de Janeiro and its engine factory in the city of São Carlos, São Paulo state, did not join the strike.

Volkswagen’s press office said the company’s cost-cutting plans did not include the Rio de Janeiro plant and would only have a minimal impact in São Carlos.

Volkswagen employs 21,000 workers at its five factories in Brazil. In 2005, the automaker was Brazil’s leading motor vehicle exporter, shipping 256,494 cars abroad.
 
Pravda – www.pravda.ru

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