Opel/Vauxhall’s management and its employees are close to a deal that would cut costs at GM’s European unit.

The two sides have issued a joint statement following a regular meeting in Rüsselsheim of the Opel/Vauxhall European Employee Forum – a body which includes company management and employee representatives from all over Europe.

The statement said that the ‘EEF discussed a European framework agreement for the future of Opel/Vauxhall’.

It said the parties had made good progress and ‘during the next days, management and employee representatives will work towards a final agreement’.

At the same time, the meeting delegates will seek support from local unions and appropriate bodies in their home countries, the statement said.

This framework agreement would then be implemented in the individual European countries by local Memorandi of Understanding which were also reviewed during the meeting.

At this point, details of the proposed agreement cannot be disclosed, the statement said.

With respect to the future of the Antwerp plant, management and employee representatives ‘are in final discussions’.

Opel is hoping to extract annual wage concessions from its 50,000 strong workforce, who are also being asked to accept thousands of job cuts at the same time in order to return Opel to break-even by next year.

Opel is also hoping to receive loan guarantees from the German government by the end of the month.