In front of the Flins plant, Renault and Stellantis employees express their concerns about the future of the sector

The social climate is tense among the two heavyweights of the French automotive industry. New illustration this Tuesday, June 22: 350 people gathered in front of the Renault site in Flins (Yvelines). Employees gathered at the call of the CGT metallurgy to protest against the job cuts and plant closings provided for by the manufacturer’s economy plan.

A gathering to which were invited workers from Stellantis (formerly PSA), whose production schedule is severely disrupted by the shortage of semiconductors. A mobilization took place simultaneously in front of the PSA site of Sochaux (Doubs), forced to stop production for several weeks in May. A strike call has been launched on the two French sites.



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The project for Flins in question

If the Flins site is not one of the sites threatened with closure (but it will have to cease its assembly activities), Denis Bréant, head of the FTM-CGT automotive sector, does not believe in a reconversion of the site without social damage. “We don’t have any confidence in this project“, he blurted. In accordance with the announcements made as part of the savings plan in May 2020, the Renault Zoé electric and Nissan Micra assembly site will abandon the production of finished vehicles in 2024 to specialize in circular economy. It will take over the activities of Choisy-le-Roi (Val-de-Marne), doomed to close, to position itself on the reconditioning of used vehicles. The manufacturer promises to generate in the long term 3,000 jobs in Flins, ie the equivalent of the cumulative workforce of Flins (2,600 people) and Choisy (260 employees), in particular by creating a mask production unit and a center dedicated to stationary energy storage in partnership with the German start-up betteries AMPS GmbH.

Concern over Renault’s strategic plan

“We are faced with an economic project reassessed at 3 billion euros and which is exclusively focused on job cuts, relocations, lower sales volumes … While Renault received 5 billion euros from PGE, comments Laurent Giblot, delegate of the CGT central at Renault. It’s a dismantling with state aid “. But beyond economic concerns, employees criticize the new directions of manufacturers, especially in terms of electric vehicles. “Under the pretext of remedying the destruction of the planet, we are being sold electrification which in fact becomes a means of relocating activities, Judge Denis Bréant. Of the 10 best-selling vehicles in the group, only three are assembled in France. With the switch to all-electric, I wonder how many Renault production sites will have in France in 15 years … “

Series of mobilizations

The Flins and Sochaux demonstrations reflect the tense social climate that has taken hold since the start of 2021 in the French automotive industry. Since March, social movements have multiplied in a sector successively weakened by the health crisis, the shortage of raw materials (Stellantis announced that the shortage of semiconductors had cut its production by 190,000 vehicles in the first quarter) and plans safety. On May 6, in front of the PSA plant in Douvrin (whose project to relocate the production of an engine to Hungary was abandoned by the manufacturer) and that of Renault in Le Mans, 1,500 people made the trip. Weakened by the drop in sales of combustion vehicles, foundries are also in turmoil. Monday, June 21, a provisional agreement ended an eight-week strike at Renault’s Brittany foundry, where the diamond brand’s chassis are produced. Before resuming negotiations in September.

Source: UsineNouvelle – Actualités A la une by

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