Chinese manufacturer BAIC is facing protests made by Opel unions for having lodged a GBP570 million bid for Opel/Vauxhall. Union leaders expressed doubts on whether BAIC is sincere in its promise to keep European factories open. They further claim that BAIC is not interested to see the carmaker survive in the long run.
Opel's top union official, Klaus Franz, said that BAIC is interested only in gaining Opel/Vauxhall technology to use on cars for the Chinese market. He further cited BAIC's lack of experience in the global auto industry.
Rainer Einenkel, union leader at Opel's Bochum factory in Germany, said, "I have a lot of concerns and skepticism about BAIC because I cannot assess its intentions."
BAIC's plans to idle production at Opel's Eisenach factory in Germany have made the union grow worried that the move would ruin productivity at the plant.
BAIC recently confirmed that it plans to sell up to 500,000 Opels each year by 2015 in China once its offer to GM for Opel/Vauxhall is approved.
At the expense of Opel's Antwerp factory in Belgium, the firm will switch some production to China by 2012. A total of 60,000 Opels will be imported to China for each of the years 2010 and 2011.