Union sources are pinning their hopes on a possible successor to Twingo production at Renault‘s Slovenian division, which this week revealed it was axing 330 jobs.
Renault’s Revoz plant has struggled with a fall in demand for its Wind model according to SKEI – Trade Union of Metal and Electrical Industry in Slovenia – but a recent meeting with the Novo Mesto automaker has boosted hopes of future job creation that could see the iconic ‘5’ model return.
“It is a question of the night shift – it is not at least for now a question about all the other 1,000 and more employees,” SKEI president Lidija Jerkic, told just-auto from Slovenia. “I think this is a problem which will be solved in 1.5 years because they will start to produce [a] new car [possible Twingo successor].
“The main problems are caused because of the Wind model, which was [a] failed investment. The problem is sales in France and of course in Germany also.”
The SKEI president conceded the 330 agency worker job losses in Novo Mesto would have an impact on the town and in a country where employment is an issue, but that it would not be “fatal,” while potential assistance from the Slovenian government for the Twingo successor was a reason for optimism.
“There is also help from the state,” she said. “Slovenia will give EUR45m (US$59m) for the new production [but it] is now in Brussels because it is help from the country to the company.”
Jerkic also cited a larger downsizing by Renault in Slovenia two years ago, but that production had returned since then, although this week’s job cuts announcement could have an effect on Revoz’s component sector, which accounts for around half of the manufacturer’s workforce.
Speculation has centred on any Twingo replacement reviving Renault’s world-renowned ‘5’ badge.
An update from the SKEI union is expected in two weeks time.