Renault may close two French plants unless labor deal is reached image

Renault may close two plants in France unless it reaches an agreement with unions on increasing productivity, holding back pay and cutting the workforce, a union leader said.

Dominique Chauvin, head of the CFE-CGC union at Renault, told Bloomberg that a plant in Flins is most at risk of closing. A Renault spokesman replied that the carmaker „isn’t threatening to close an industrial plant,” as union talks are aimed at finding ways to increase competitiveness.

France’s second-biggest carmaker said earlier today that it will increase production in France by 15 percent provided that a labor deal is reached. Renault began talks with unions in November as part of efforts to maintain profit levels in an unstable European car market.
Renault is asking unions to accept a wage freeze in France this year and then raises of 0.5 percent in 2014 and 0.75 percent in 2015, the automaker said today in a statement.

Renault’s French plants may build 80,000 more vehicles a year by 2016 to supply manufacturers that the company cooperates with, including Nissan and Daimler AG, the statement added. Currently, Renault makes in France 530,000 vehicles a year for its own brand.

GM Europe, which is unprofitable, said today that it may accelerate the shutdown of its plant in Bochum, Germany.