Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, 11 September, 2009

How long is the Opel lifeline?

Published on 11 September 2009 at 14:10
Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, 11 September, 2009


A deal has been struck. After several months of negotiations, German car maker Opel will be sold by General Motors to the Canadian automotive supplier Magna and the Russian bank Sberbank. Notwithstanding Angela Merkel's announcement that she is "delighted," the German press remains sceptical about the rescue operation for the brand. Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung takes the view that only the German Chancellor will experience any genuine feelings of relief, now that "she will be able to get on with her election campaign without worrying about Opel." However, the company's 50,000 workers (25,000 in Germany and 25,000 elsewhere in Europe) are less than overjoyed — 10,000 jobs are under threat, and "the maker of small and medium sized cars will be hit hard by the ending of Germany's scrappage scheme." The daily further notes that the goodwill of foreign governments towards Berlin will likely suffer, because "the Magna solution will require more sacrifices from employees abroad — in the UK and Belgium, and possibly in Poland and Spain — than it will from Opel's German workers." In short, FAZ concludes that "there is no reason to feel relieved."

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