Czech car maker Škoda Auto plans to create about 3,000 new jobs at its
plant in Mladá Boleslav, if it reaches agreement with the unions to launch
an 18-shifts-per-week system, the company CEO Bernhard Maier told the Czech
News Agency on Wednesday.
Mr Maier said the company is ready to launch negotiations with the government as well as with the town and regional representatives to build to new infrastructure that would enable the company to increase its capacity.
Unions at the Czech Republic’s biggest car maker, Škoda Auto, have
tabled a demand for pay rises this year of 18 percent.
They have asked for a 14 percent increase in the basic wage and a further 4.0 percent rise related to personal evaluations. Unions are also seeking to repeat last year’s practice where two special one off payments totalling around 90,000 crowns. The average wage for a car worker last year was around 40,000 crowns a month.
A new deal should be in place by April 1 to cover the following 12 months. Škoda Auto employs around 30,000 people at its three Czech plants.
A booming economy on the back of higher wages, more people in jobs, and strong exports – fuelled largely by the auto sector - and hardly dimmed by the end of the low crown and resurrection of interest rates as a central bank weapon. That was the big economic picture of the Czech economy in 2017 with the foot on the pedal likely to be lifted just slightly over the coming 12 months.
Czech car maker Škoda Auto is reported to have sold 107,400 cars in
October, which is an increase by 9.7 percent on the previous year. The
company’s sales went up by 11.3 percent in Europe, by 23.8 percent in
Russia and by 7.7 percent in India.
Despite a drop in sales, Škoda Octavia remains the company’s best-selling model with 37,100 cars delivered to the market in October, followed by the Škoda Rapid with 18,300 cars.
The Škoda Auto brand and that of Volkswagen and Spanish manufacturing unit
SEAT should be more clearly distinguished from each other according to the
general manager of the Volkswagen Group, Matthias Müller.
The move should, it is claimed, help reduce conflicts and tension between the companies targeting the same mass market. Production should be targeted at 14 different customer segments, according to the declaration made to managers in Volkswagen’s home city of Wolfsburg.
Media reports have recently suggested tension within the group particular focused on suspicions that the success of Škoda Auto could be coming at the expense of other Volkswagen companies .
The management of carmakers Škoda Auto have reassured the Czech prime
minister, Bohuslav Sobotka, that they will do all they can to keep jobs in
the Czech Republic. There has been speculation that Volkswagen, which owns
Škoda, could transfer part of its production to Germany from other
Mr. Sobotka said he had received the reassurances after a meeting with representatives of the automobile industry on Wednesday.
His words were echoed by Škoda Auto CEO Bernhard Maier, who said the Czech Republic was the heart and home of the company and would remain so.
Mr. Maier said the carmaker was currently looking to increase production capacity to keep up with worldwide demand.