The labor union at Ford’s plant in Genk, Belgium said the company didn’t offer an assurance about the facility’s future.
Ford is currently in a difficult situation trying to find solution to diminish excess production in Europe, where it expects a loss of over $1 billion this year due to the economic crisis and implicitly decreased sales. The Genk factory in Belgium, manufactures the S-Max minivan, the Galaxy minivan and the Mondeo midsized car. If the automaker decides to close a plant in Europe, this one would be a potential candidate. Although the automaker and the union officials met at the company’s European headquarters in Cologne, Germany, to discuss the future of the plant, no assurances were given concerning this issue.
“We didn’t receive any reassurances on the future of the Genk plant,” said Rohnny Champagne, a spokesman for Genk’s ABVV union. “Mr. Odell told us that he could not give any guarantees. He also explained he received a lot of comparable requests from unions in the other European production facilities and gave them the same answer. “
Production of the new Mondeo is expected to begin at the Genk plant this October, six months later than it was previously settled. Auto sales in the European market have fallen to their lowest level in 17 years and Ford is already using only 63% of its plant capacity to be profitable.