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Saab’s largest union has expressed support for the embattled automaker as it halted production this week due to a supplier payments dispute.

Manufacture stopped for two hours on Tuesday (29 March), but Saab said it expects to resolve the issues in the short term to prevent a repeat of the disruption to supply.

However, backing for the manufacturer has come in the form of IF Metall, Saab’s largest union with 1,500 members.

“We knew it would not be a walk on easy street, especially after the first couple of months,” IF Metall research officer Aleksandar Zuza told just-auto from Stockholm.

“We always anticipated it would be problems down the road, but I am pretty confident it should not be a life-threatening condition right now.”

There has been speculation Saab had requested further funds from the European Investment Bank (EIB), but calls to the institution in Luxembourg could not confirm this.

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By GlobalData

However, Saab parent Spyker chief executive Victor Muller met officials from Sweden’s National Debt Office earlier this week to give assurances concerning collateral to meet credit guarantee terms provided to secure EIB funding.

“At local level we sit on the board, so we are working actively…to see how it is handled strategically,” said Zuzu. “I am concerned, but I am a trade union person, so I am paid to be concerned.”

The EIB provided Saab with US$550m (EUR387.5m)of funding back by the Swedish government.

Saab in Sweden was not immediately availalbe for comment.