Italian carmaker Fiat has again said all bets are off as far as its 2010 “Fabricca Italia” project goes.
After stunning the workforce and markets alike by announcing the five-year investment plan was not sacred on Thursday, it clarified its position on Monday on the demand of an outraged Italian government.
Three years ago 20 billion euros in Italian investments were promised in Fiat’s car and industrial arms by 2015.
“When it concerns a large company such as Fiat in Italy, the government’s interest is very very high. So we would like to investigate the strategies decided by Fiat more thoroughly, and what Marchionne (Fiat’s CEO) has in mind for factory jobs in our country,” said Italy’s Labour Minister Elsa Fornero.
Unions accepted some tough concessions to seal the investment plan, and are now feeling short-changed.
But Fiat’s five Italian factories have seen their sales plunge. This year’s forecast production for Italy is fully 50% down on forecasts made only in January.
In the meantime Fiat’s Chrysler investment, with its cheaper overseas factories, is starting to pay off handsomely. The fears are some day all Fiats will be made in places like Poland or Turkey, Romania, or Morocco.
Yes, the 500 seems ubiquitous, but it is the only Fiat drivers seem to want to buy at the moment.