At least GM isn't calling it a loan. Being GM is anologious to black
hole for more money, I guess to be believable they want yet another
corporate welfare bailout.
Europe is known for bailouts, but not so friendly with foreigners
needing them to make cars the Germans don't want. UK and Germany now in
fiscal debt problems, could be GM is asking for posterity. Or perhaps
has got a few British in their pockets.
Lets see, $4.9 billion for 45,000 jobs. That is $108,888 per job on top
of debt GM already holds. Did GM ever pay back Germany for the billion
or so for the Opal sale that never happened? My guess is Germany might
as well confiscate GM's German assets for debt repayment and call it a
day. Maybe time for the German leader to pull GM's plug.
=====GM calls on European governments to pay most of $4.9B restructuring costs
Mon Nov 23, 4:54 PM
Aoife White, The Associated Press
BRUSSELS, Belgium - General Motors Co. on Monday asked European
governments to help pay most of the 3.3 billion euros (US$4.9 billion)
it needs to restructure its struggling European operations.
At talks in Brussels on Monday, EU countries where GM has plants vowed
to avoid individual negotiations with the company before a Dec. 4
meeting, where they will co-ordinate their response to GM's
restructuring plans, due later this week.
Nick Reilly, the CEO of GM's Adam Opel GmbH and Vauxhall units, said it
would be "quite difficult" for GM to supply much of the funding because
it must also bear restructuring costs in the United States and elsewhere.
"We are looking for support of any government that feels willing to be
able to provide us some financing support in the medium term," Reilly
told reporters after meeting officials from EU countries where GM makes
cars. "We have indicated that we will provide some of the funding."
Reilly said GM would not be influenced in deciding where to cut jobs by
how much money each government might offer because "the plan that we
have is already in existence."
He refused to give details of the plan to cut some 20 to 25 per cent of
the company's car-making capacity - that will likely shed thousands of
jobs. He said he first wanted to talk to workers' representatives.
"People at the plants will be the first to hear it," he said.
GM met Monday with ministers from Germany, Belgium, Britain, Spain,
Sweden and Poland as well as European Union commissioners in Brussels to
discuss cutbacks and aid. There are fears that countries offering bigger
subsidies could escape plant closures.
Germany's deputy economy minister, Jochen Homann, said there was a
commitment from all countries not to make any promises before GM puts
forward the restructuring plan.
The head of Belgium's Flanders region, Kris Peeters, said he expects the
company to send that plan to governments at the end of this week and
that "there will be until the meeting next week, no further individual
meetings with GM."
Ahead of Monday's, Germany and Belgium said they did not want to join a
subsidy race or see any state payments to the company linked to
guarantees that it would keep jobs.
That after Germany earlier this year raised hackles when it offered a
large bridge loan and loan guarantees if GM Europe sold the majority of
its struggling European business to Canadian autoparts maker Magna
International Inc. (TSX: MG-A.TO) and Russian lender Sberbank.
Belgium and others were angered by reports that Magna won German backing
- and possible funding - because they had promised to save jobs in
Germany and cut posts elsewhere, even at more efficient plants in Poland
GM's decision to ditch the Magna sale and hang on to the units has
reawakened those fears - and caused officials to call in EU regulators
as referees at the Monday meeting to discuss GM's restructuring.
EU commissioners said in a statement that the countries had agreed that
any financial support to GM would not be linked to where it made job
cuts. They also said state aid had to facilitate car makers' efforts to
adapt production to falling demand.
Britain and Poland have indicated that they are ready to support Opel
operations in their countries - but have not said how much they might
give. Spain says any support it gives would have to be agreed to by the
company and its workers.
Opel employs around 45,000 people in Europe, about 25,000 of them in
Germany appears reluctant to offer GM the 4.5-billion-euro loan it had
promised Magna - and has yet to pledge the company any more money.
German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle said Monday that GM should
focus on protecting jobs and must repay any German loans "to the euro
and cent" because the money "belongs to taxpayers and not GM."