Monday, 10 October 2011

Italy's Fiom union calls Fiat strike

Italy's radical metalworkers union Fiom has called a one-day strike at Fiat plants nationwide for Oct. 21, saying it feared the carmaker planned to further wind down its operations in the country.The strike was decided after Fiat earlier this week said it was quitting employers' group Confindustria in a row over labor contracts, a move which Fiom says could be a precursor for a gradual disengagement from Italy.

"We are striking to make Fiat stay in Italy," Maurizio Landini, the head of Fiom, told Fiat's union delegates at a meeting in Rome on Saturday.

"Fiat, which is engaged in the creation of a major international group with 181 plants in 30 countries, cannot afford to operate in Italy in an environment of uncertainty that is so incongruous with the conditions that exist in the industrialised world," Marchionne wrote in the letter.

Marchionne says the five Italian plants, which employ around 25,000 people, are loss-making and blames rigid labor laws for low productivity


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