European trade unions have slammed as “abysmal,” information coming from PSA Peugeot Citroen and General Motors as they continue with plans to develop their alliance.

The unions – meeting yesterday (18 April) in Brussels through the auspices of the European Metalworkers’ Federation (EMF) – expressed their anger at the lack of communication.

GM and PSA want to co-operate closely in areas such as business development, logistics and purchasing, but the Works Councils fear such tie-ups will “considerably increase” employment risks in both companies.

“The information flow to the companies’ employees is abysmal,” said an EMF statement. “The companies are not fulfilling their obligations to provide information to the Works Councils and the unions, thus violating employee information and consultation rights.

“It is clear both companies are currently in a precarious economic situation. And thousands of jobs, not only in Europe, but also on the global level, are at stake. It is also clear the alliance will considerably increase employment risks in both companies”

In response, the trade unions say they will set up a joint worker representative steering group in parallel to the alliance’s steering group, while at the same time calling on management to “immediately and fully” disclose plans concerning site, production and employment.

What is referred to as a “vast information and action campaign” is also being prepared within both companies, while a European-wide trade union co-ordination group is to be convened.

“The aim of the trade Unions and Works Councils is not to provoke an escalation of the situation vis-à-vis the companies,” said the EMF. “However, they are determined to actively fight to preserve European jobs and obtain employment guarantees in the long term.

“Full information and constructive cooperation are necessary in this respect. Building up-mutual trust is a precondition for finding a joint solution.”

The EMF earlier told just-auto the first the PSA Works Council heard of the alliance was when they read about the proposal in the press.

“When there is a result of the GM-PSA discussions or when we are a point where we want to inform the employee representatives, we will do that by all means,” a GM Europe spokesman told just-auto.

“I can’t give a timeline – that is not the way it works. We do that as we make progress.”