Fiat workers seek deal to save Italian plants

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Fiat workers seek deal to save Italian plants

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Hundreds of Fiat car workers have been protesting in a bid to save the company’s future in Italy.

The firm been holding talks in Turin with union leaders to stave off closures.

It comes after Fiat’s chief executive warned that Italy was the only country in the world where the US based Chrysler group made a loss.

But in response Italy’s Labour Minister, Maurizio Sacconi, said it would be “inappropriate to destabilise industrial relations.” He also called on Fiat to maintain production at Mirafiori, its largest plant in Italy.

The prospect of cuts in jobs and capacity at the site, which employs some 5,800 workers, sparked large protests last week.

Fiat says a decision to move production of some of its popular models to Serbia would not hurt Mirafiori.

It has already made it clear that it wants to employees on more flexible contracts in a bid to boost output.

Despite union opposition, Fiat has recently changed working conditions at its Pomigliano plant near Naples to break what many view as rigid labour rules.