PSA Peugeot-Citroen Shuts Down A0 40-year Old Factory In France
|   Sunday, October 27, 2013
The French from PSA Citroen will close their factory in Aulnay. The plant has a tradition of 40 years, and is the first in the plan that will run until 2015, which requires three factories closed and the renunciation of 11,000 employees.

The factory in Aulnay, France, will be closed after the car number 8569391 rolls out, a Citroen C3. It is located near Paris and has a history of 40 years. Its closure was confirmed a year ago.

The factory in Aulnay is the first auto plant in France closed in the last 20 years, the decision was classified as "unacceptable" by President Francois Hollande, but explained as "inevitable" by the French Minister of Industry.


The PSA Corporation offered severance packages to workers from Aulnay and promised assistance in their search for a new job. Of the 3,000 permanent employees of the plant, about 2,700 have already obtained a new position gotten a new job. But trade unionists say that there are nearly 1,100 employees from Aulnay have yet to find an alternative, although the plant has only 3,300 employees. The PSA Corporation has signed a commitment with the union that promises to freeze salaries in 2014, and to reduce overtime pay in exchange for guaranteed investments, and the launch of new models, along with the assurance that they will not kill other plants in France in the next three years.

PSA pledged to introduce a new model at each of the five manufacturing plants in France. Meanwhile, rivals from Renault have promised trade unionists in March, they will freeze wages for three years, but will not close any factory in France, although trade unionists have been forced to accept a reduction in workforce of 17 percent. At the same time, Renault committed to increase car production in France by 34 percent by 2016.

The European car manufacturers are able to produce 26 million units per year, including the plants in Russia. According to experts from IHS Automotive, the current production capacity exceeds demand and sales estimates by seven million units. For an auto plant to be profitable it needs an occupancy rate of 80 percent, say specialists at CM-CIC Securities. IHS Automotive estimates that would require the closure of 18 factories the size of the Aulnay in Europe to equal production with the demand for cars on the market under current conditions.

"The decision to close Aulnay was difficult, but it was a courageous and essential one given the fall of the markets and the industrial overcapacity in Europe," stated Philippe Dorge, human resources director at Peugeot.

Back in 1973, May, the first Citroen DS came out at the new plant at Aulnay. Since then, it rolled out various Citroen and Peugeot models. On July 12th 2012 the company announced that it will permanently shut down the Aulnay-sous-Bois plant because of overproduction.

The site at Aulnay also houses a subterranean a repository of Citroen archives as well as 370 Citroen models. Established in 2002, the repository is not open to the public, but enthusiasts and other important visitors are sometimes given permission to visit.
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