Germany’s auto giant Volkswagen says it expects to lose as much as 25,000 jobs once it shifts to electric cars in the coming years.
Volkswagen Group Chief Human Resources Officer Karlheinz Blessing told the German media that fewer employees will be required for manufacturing electric cars given that they are made of fewer components than vehicles with combustion engines.
Blessing told the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung newspaper that the global scandal over the company’s cheating emission tests was involved in the planned job cuts, emphasizing however that the scandal was not the main factor.
Blessing added that the board plans no compulsory redundancies, "but we will reduce a number of employees." Volkswagen expects up to 25,000 staff to be cut over the next decade as older workers retire, the official was quoted as saying by media.
Management and labor leaders will accordingly meet to discuss the company’s cost cuts before a November 18 meeting of the supervisory board to approve future spending plans.
Nevertheless, there are already speculations that talks with unions may fail. This is because workers insist that the company should invest in its own battery production, Russia Today said in a report on the development.
According to Blessing, Volkswagen is considering the possibility but no decision has yet been made.
"If 30 percent of the value creation will be in the battery system in the future, it is right to consider whether we will step in and to what extent. We cannot leave that to others. How deeply we will engage is a matter we will discuss as part of the future pact,” he has been quoted as saying by RT.com.