World Bulletin/News Desk
Renault does not intend to cut jobs or plants "at this stage", but domestic factories must improve productivity to match sites in Spain and Britain, Chief Operating Officer Carlos Tavares said in an interview published on Friday.
European automakers are struggling to cope with a glut of excess capacity amid a sustained market decline. Renault's larger domestic rival PSA Peugeot Citroen is cutting more than 10,000 domestic jobs, closing its Aulnay assembly plant near Paris and shrinking another.
"At this stage, there is no plan to cut jobs or close a site," Renault's no.2 executive was quoted as saying by La Tribune. "Our plants are in a difficult situation, which we are managing with temporary layoffs ... But the slump in Europe is likely to last."
Renault plans talks with unions to bring the competitiveness of its French plants into line with its "benchmark" factory in Palencia, Spain and with Japanese affiliate Nissan's Sunderland site in Britain, Tavares said.
"I don't see any reason why our performance should be lower in France than in Spain," he added.
Renault employs about 50,000 workers in France.