More woes for Peugeot Citroen

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More woes for Peugeot Citroen

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Europe’s second biggest car maker has posted losses of 819 million euros for the first half of the year – almost four times as much as experts had forecast.

That figure has prompted the Peugeot Citroen group to announce new cost-cutting measures aimed at saving 1.5 billion euros by 2015.

Earlier this month PSA announced it was closing its Aulnay-sous-Bois plant, with a loss of 8,000 jobs.

Around a quarter of those facing redundancy were outside its Paris head office on Wednesday for the latest announcements.

The group’s current debts are estimated at 2.4 billion euros. But according to Pierre Mercier from the CGT union, employees should not be picking up the bill.

“They paid out 2.7 billion euros in shareholder dividends,” he said. “And they splashed out 3 billion more buying back shares.”

The Aulnay plant lay-offs have sparked outrage in part because the plans were leaked last year but firmly denied by the group.

Now staff have managed to force the appointment of an accountancy firm to look over the books and check the redundancies are needed. That process will start towards the end of August and will likely delay any lay-offs for several months at least.