MAN will scale back truck production in January because of slowing orders.

Sueddeutsche Zeitung reported chief executive Anders Nielsen as saying that production is to be adjusted according to demand. He added the company has applied for subsidies under the German government's short-time work programme, Kurzarbeit, for the first half of 2013.

He said job cuts were not planned though short-time working would affect 3,500 workers at the Munich plant and 1,800 in Salzgitter.

Daimler Trucks slowed production at its Woerth assembly plant in October and November in response to weak demand in Europe but has not applied for assistance under the short-time work programme.

Nielsen told Sueddeutsche Zeitung he expects business to be stable at a "lower level" over the next two to three years but would work to improve profitability at MAN.