FRANKFURT — General Motors unit Opel said it signed a collective labor agreement with employees at its German factories in Ruesselsheim, Kaiserslautern and Eisenach, in an accord that includes a job protection guarantee until 2018.
The deal is a sign of smoother relations between management and the Opel workforce, who have in the past clashed over how to return the money-losing European unit to profitability by 2015.
Urich Schumahcer, Opel’s head of personnel, in a statement:
“For the company and its employees this is an important step toward securing our future.”
About 7,150 employees work at the three factories.
As part of the deal, which was signed on Thursday, Opel’s management pledged to give the Russelsheim factory an additional model to build, to continue making the Corsa and Adam models in Eisenach, and to continue building components in Kaiserslautern.
The factory in Bochum is set to stop producing cars at the end of the year.
General Motors has described 2014 as a “transition year” in Europe, where Opel will introduce a redesigned Corsa subcompact late in the year. A redesigned Astra compact is expected to follow in early 2015, along with new families of gasoline and diesel engines, helping to drive GM’s European operations back to break-even.