VW efficiency talks break down

Volkswagen’s plans to cut costs following the emissions scandal have been left in limbo after talks with the unions broke down earlier this week.

Labour bosses at the company broke off talks, accusing management of trying to squeeze out greater savings around overtime work, efficiency gains and apprenticeships than had been agreed in November.

The unions have accused VW brand chief Herbert Diess of wanting to cut temporary workers more quickly and deeply than agreed. However, VW argues it cannot keep a large number of temporary staff on its books because of shrinking demand for models such as the Golf hatchback and Passat saloon.

VW has confirmed talks have been suspended but added no further details. The efficiency drive at VW will lead to €3.7bn in annual savings by 2020 and up to 30,000 voluntary job cuts.