Vauxhall to axe 9,000 jobs across Europe

Car giant General Motors firmed up plans today to cut 9,000 jobs across Europe, saying that up to 60 per cent will be in Germany.

Nick Reilly, a senior official of the US car-maker, met employee representatives at a meeting in Germany, to go through the firm's detailed plans for the future.

Mr Reilly said that "difficult decisions" will have to be made and repeated that jobs will have to be lost.

Production in Europe will be cut by around 20% and around 9,000 jobs will be lost with between 50 and 60 per cent in Germany, he said.

Mr Reilly made no mention of how many jobs are threatened at the Vauxhall factories in Luton and Ellesmere Port.

During a visit to Britain last week, Mr Reilly said he believed there was scope for a "significant reduction" in the 800 job cuts threatened in the UK earlier this year under previous plans.

He stressed after today's meeting in Russelsheim no final decisions had been taken but the firm was entering a period of consultation with trade unions.

He did announce that a working group had been set up to study the future of the company's plant at Antwerp which had an "uncertain" future.

"We all have the same objective - to create a viable, sustainable business. It is very doable and we look forward to working with our employee representatives."

Mr Reilly added he hoped to complete consultations with the unions within the next two to three weeks.