Fiat and its unions have been summoned by the Italian government to a meeting in Turin this Wednesday (28 July) to discuss manufacturing issues.
The news that minister of labour and social policies Maurizio Sacconi has called for all sides to sit down together comes days after Fiat announced plans to switch Multipla production to Serbia from its Italian plant at Mirafiori
It has also been called as Fiat encounters continued difficult industrial relations with its powerful unions and the government’s move appears to be a way to formulate where the automaker stands in the so-called ‘Factory Italy’ plan for production and employment.
However, Fiat’s largest union, FIOM has expressed scepticism that Wednesday’s meeting will address the current industrial relations situation.
“This [meeting] does not have new meaning as it will discuss the future of Termini Imerese, Pomigliano d’Arco and Mirafiori,” a FIOM spokesman in Italy told just-auto.
“It is not about the future of worker relations – this may explain many things about our political situation. Maybe Fiat will not close the Mirafiori plant but this plant [could be] reduced. It may imply the beginning of downsizing.”
Only last week FIOM staged two strikes in protest at plant closures and restructuring of bonuses and additional payments.
The Italian government is remaining tight-lipped on what will be on the agenda this week at the Turin discussions, which are also being organised in tandem with the Piedmont region.
“The minister will not grant interviews before meeting Wednesday,” a spokeswoman for Sacconi’s ministry of labour in Rome told just-auto.
Fiat could not immediately be reached for comment.