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February 3, 2011

ITALY: FIM slams FIOM Mirafiori walkout as “flop”

An Italian union representing metalworkers in Italy has branded last week's Italian strike by Fiat labour body FIOM "a flop."

An Italian union representing metalworkers in Italy has branded last week’s Italian strike by Fiat labour body FIOM “a flop.”

The hardline FIOM union has been bitterly opposed to Fiat’s new productivity contract at the Mirafiori plant and claimed an 80% turnout at the factory, as well as walkouts at other sites such as Fiat Auto Cassino, Melfi, Piedmont and Terni.

However, moderate union Federazione Italiana Metalmeccanici (FIM) countered FIOM’s claims, noting attendance at rallies called by the hardline labour body was populated with several other organisations.

“It was a flop,” FIM national secretary with automotive responsibility Bruno Vitali said to just-auto from Italy. “The strike at the factory [Mirafiori] was very low from the workers but the square was full of other people – students, young people and social movement [s] – not a lot [of] workers.

“FIOM, in my opinion, is [a] more political movement – it is concentrated with an alliance of left [wing] political parties. Our position with Mirafiori is we supported the agreement – the next step for us [to] push the company to training for new production.”

Acceptance of the deal at Mirafiroi should now pave the way for the construction of large SUVs for distribution under both the Jeep and Alfa Romeo brands worldwide, including in the US.

Fiat estimates annual production levels of 280,000 vehicles per year with the possibility of new jobs being created.

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