GM of­fers S. Korean work­ers VSS

New Straits Times - - BUSINESS / WORLD -

SEOUL: Gen­eral Mo­tors’ (GM) South Korean unit is of­fer­ing work­ers three times their an­nual base salary, money for col­lege tuition and more than US$9,000 (RM35,280) to­wards a new car as part of a vol­un­tary re­dun­dancy plan at the trou­bled car­maker.

The pack­age, made in a no­tice to em­ploy­ees came af­ter GM said on Tues­day it will shut the plant in the south­west­ern city of Gun­san by May and de­cide within weeks on the fate of its re­main­ing three fac­to­ries in the coun­try.

GM work­ers at a South Korean plant staged a protest yes­ter­day against its planned clo­sure, call­ing the move by the United States car­maker a “death sen­tence”, and threat­en­ing a strike.

The so-called vol­un­tary sep­a­ra­tion scheme (VSS), opened to em­ploy­ees on Tues­day, will last un­til March 2, ac­cord­ing to the in­ter­nal doc­u­ment.

“This is the most com­pen­sa­tion we can pro­vide, given our man­age­ment con­di­tions and it will be dif­fi­cult for us to of­fer more ben­e­fits,” said the com­pany in the let­ter.

“GM Korea has recorded a fi­nan­cial loss of nearly three tril­lion won (RM10.9 bil­lion) over the past four years and con­tin­ues to make losses as a re­sult of low util­i­sa­tion rates, con­tin­ued rises in labour costs and an ex­ces­sive work­force,” said the let­ter.

Detroit-based GM has said it will book an US$850 mil­lion charge to re­flect the re­struc­tur­ing costs, in­clud­ing US$375 mil­lion in cash re­lated to em­ployee ex­penses.

EPA PIC

Gen­eral Mo­tors unionised work­ers at the Gun­san plant in South Korea stag­ing a protest against its plants clo­sure yes­ter­day.

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