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Audi to cut 9.5K jobs in electric car push

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German carmaker Audi will cut about 9 500 jobs as the company shifts to electric vehicles.

This, as globally, the momentum for electric mobility has increased exponentially over the last years.

The global shift is primarily driven by emission reduction commitments, growing urban air pollution concerns and continued crude oil price volatility.

McKinsey’s latest analysis of electric vehicles shows the global electric-light-vehicle industry continues to make solid progress.

In a statement, Audi says a new era is dawning. “Audi is taking sustained action for greater economy, flexibility and secure jobs.”

It says the board of management and employee representatives have reached a fundamental agreement within the framework of Audi.Zukunft.

The decisions relate in particular to the optimisation of production capacities at the two German plants and socially responsible workforce adjustments, while extending job guarantees up to the end of 2029.

The €6 billion thus generated will secure the strategic targeted return corridor of 9% to 11% and will flow into future projects such as electrification and digitalisation, it says.

In this way, it adds, Audi.Zukunft will sustainably strengthen the competitiveness of the “Four Rings” and will make the company fit for the coming years.

The agreement takes effect on 29 November and applies for the next 10 years.

“With the Audi transformation plan, we have already anchored a successful programme of measures. And with Audi.Zukunft, we are now also tackling structural issues in order to prepare Audi for the challenges ahead,” says Audi CEO Bram Schot.

“Our employees are Audi’s most valuable asset and the key to our successful change,” notes Wendelin Göbel, board of management member for human resources.

“For this reason, Audi is excluding terminations for operational reasons until 31 December 2029. The company must become lean and fit for the future, which means some job profiles will no longer be needed and new ones will be created.

“That is why Audi is investing systematically in future-oriented qualification measures for the employees and thus in the future of the two sites in Germany. At the same time, the Works Council and the company’s management have agreed to cut up to 9 500 jobs until 2025.”

Göbel says this will take place along the demographic curve – in particular through employee turnover and a new, attractive early-retirement programme.

“An equivalent percentage staff reduction will take place in management. Nonetheless, Audi will continue to recruit in the coming years.”

According to Göbel, the company plans to create up to 2 000 new expert positions in areas such as electric mobility and digitalisation.

He notes those appointments will be made on the principle of internal before external candidates.

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