Factory Ford in Almussafes (Valencia) was chosen in 2020 by an American company for investment €42 million to install a battery plant and produce two new hybrid models starting in 2025.. This project “insurance” the workload for the coming years and led to an agreement with UGT that the company’s new agreement, signed in April that year, included wage and flexibility measures subject to electrification. Ford’s award did not prevent the workforce from shifting as a result of the ERE, which affected 1,124 workers. Now Ford and UGT have agreed to create a new Temporary Rules of Employment (ERTE) file from this Tuesday until March 28 to adapt to the reduction in production at the plant, since four years later the investment has not begun, the planned schedule of which is: already behind schedule, as the union says warned repeatedly.
ERTE will be for the day shift of automobile factories, which cannot affect more than 500 workers per day and in which, as a rule, no one should spend more than 16 working days in ERTE. At the engine plant, complete shutdowns were established on February 13, 19 and March 4, the UGT statement clarifies. The Valencia plant has been chaining different ERTEs for several years and has extended the validity of the latest file until June 30, 2023 due to the instability of the supply of semiconductors and derivative components. Therefore, the economic conditions of this file will be the same as in the previous ERTE: 80% of real salary and 100% of allowances, special bonuses, vacations and length of service. Thus, the company’s management took into account the conditions put forward by UGT during negotiations regarding the dates and number of casualties on a daily basis. According to the union, the surplus of labor “can only be associated with a specific problem associated with the lack of planned production, and not with an excess of personnel.”
“What may happen next will depend on the meeting that UGT has with Ford management around the world,” UGT said. A meeting to be held in April at which workers’ representatives will present the multinational’s commitments to workers in the Electrification Agreement “to which they must respond.” For its part, STM-Intersindical did not sign the agreement as it said it would not support “further wage losses” as “staff again lose 20% of their real daily wages,” reports Europa Press. The union member criticized the “painful situation” he believes the electrification deal has “sucked” the workforce into. “We are already suffering economic losses of about 10% of purchasing power. We have lost too much,” he lamented.