Opel to fire 1,200 Bochum workers

March 18, 2011

, RANKFURT, Mar 18 – German automaker Opel plans to fire 1,200 workers at its plant in Bochum, western Germany, the head of the company\’s works council said.

Opel, the European unit of General Motors, had planned to reduce the Bochum workforce by 1,800 positions through voluntary departures but not enough staff accepted the proposal, Rainer Einenkel told Friday\’s Rheinische Post daily.

As a result, the parent group "asked me seriously to approve" the firing of 1,200 workers, he said.

An Opel spokesman told the newspaper that talks on the subject continued with personnel representatives.

The company will have a new boss as of April 1, meanwhile, after German Karl-Friedrich Strache was named to the post on Thursday.

After initially seeking to sell Opel, GM decided to restructure the division, which provides important research and development of smaller, fuel-efficient autos.

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