GAZ Group plans to lay off up to 5,800 workers, local reports said, citing company representatives.

Business daily Kommersant said Yelena Matveyeva of GAZ had denied earlier reports lay offs would total 14,000 people.

She said the majority of those who lose their jobs would be transferred to other companies, such as independent service units, or sent for retraining.

In August, GAZ Group said it planned to lay off around 8,000 employees over the remainder of the year. It was the fourth time since the start of the financial crisis in 2008 that it had laid off workers.

Russia’s vehicle market has collapsed this year on the back of a deep recession and severely restricted credit availability.

Sales of new passenger cars and light commercial vehicles (LCVs) plunged 51% year-on-year to 989,996 units in the first eight months of 2009 and by 54% to 110,934 in August.