The Spanish government will spend EUR1.69m from a European Union (EU) European Globalisation adjustment Fund (EGF) on helping workers made redundant from just two auto components manufacturers, despite originally intending to spread the cash between 12 companies.

Spain had applied for the money to help 1,082 workers laid off from these firms but, in a European Commission document obtained by, Madrid said that for four companies in the Castilla y León region “it has not been possible to reach agreement” with unions and management on appropriate measures for spending the money.

Companies losing out included Nissan Motor Ibérica, in Avila; Grupo Antolín and Valeo Plastic Omnium, Villamuriel de Cerrato, Palencia; and Benteler España, Burgos.

In addition, workers from six companies in the Aragón region get no cash because their regional government would not make the necessary matching funding required for EU globalisation fund handouts.

These unlucky workers were laid off from Delphi Packard España; Automotive Connections and Equipments; Auxiliar de Componentes Eléctricos; Faurecia Automotive España; Caravanas Moncayo; and Joint Camping Car, all in Zaragoza.

Instead the money will be focused on 368 former employees of the US-owned Lear Corporation plant, in Avila; and the Nachi factory in Salamanca.

Spain has been granted conditional approval to spend the money by the European Commission (pending confirmation by MEPs and EU ministers).

The fund was established to help retrain and support workers losing their jobs because of global economic trends, such as auto production moving to lower wage countries outside Europe.

Keith Nuthall