Opel has confirmed it will shut its plant in Antwerp, Belgium.
The move is the first part of a restructuring of Opel and Vauxhall in order to reduce capacity, which will result in 8000 job losses. Closing the Antwerp plant will result in 2300 job losses.
“We fully understand the effect this announcement has on the Antwerp employees and their families and we sympathise with them,” said Opel CEO Nick Reilly. “Many have been dedicated to the plant over generations and have done an excellent job producing great quality cars.
"The decision to announce this today was not taken lightly; instead, it is the unfortunate result of the current business reality. We must make this announcement now so that we can secure a viable future for the entire Opel and Vauxhall operations.”
The closure of the plant is now subject to a consultation priod. Opel said in a statement that, if the closure is confirmed, production would conclude in the next few months.
Opel's statement added: "It is expected that the full restructuring plan, when completed, will affect all Opel/Vauxhall production sites and entities through measures such as capacity reductions, job redundancies and/or labour cost reductions."