BERLIN - U.S. auto giant General Motors (IW 500/4) has decided to stop auto manufacturing at its Opel plant in Bochum, western Germany, after 2016, the head of the works committee said on Friday, a move that could mean the plant will close.
"Management announced that there will be no more auto production after 2016," at the plant which employs 3,000 people, works committee chief Rainer Einenkel said, adding that the decision would be discussed by the committee on Monday.
A spokesman for the factory confirmed the works committee meeting on Monday but declined to comment on Einenkel's comments or provide details on the meeting's agenda. (UPDATE: Management on Monday pledged to keep the site running as a parts distribution center.)
Built in 1962, the Bochum plant manufactures the Opel Zafira model and has regularly been cited as a site to be closed as GM Europe tries to get to grips with its surplus production capacity.
In June, GM said the plant would remain in operation until the end of the Zafira's production run, at the end of 2016.
Opel, a troubled GM unit, has three other German factories, its main plant in Ruesselsheim, near Frankfurt, and one each in Kaiserslautern, western Germany, and Eisenach, central Germany.
On Wednesday, Einenkel said that Opel would return to a program of shorter work shifts in Bochum owing to weak sales of the Zafira in Europe.
Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2012