The Volkswagen group plans to use most of its two-day supervisory-board meeting this week to solve a number of critical issues - but likely not the fate of Bernd Pischetsrieder, VW's CEO.
A member of the supervisory board, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said the renewal of Pischetsrieder's five-year contract likely won't be on the agenda during the meetings, which are Wednesday, April 19, and Thursday, April 20.
"That will probably be dealt with on May 2, a day before the VW annual shareholders meeting, at the earliest," the VW insider said.
Instead, the meeting is expected to focus on a number of difficult restructuring issues at the core Volks-wagen brand, including:
- Cutting production at VW's high-cost western Germany factories, specifically component plants.
- Boosting lagging sales in key markets, such as the United States and China, where VW is losing money.
- Bolstering VW's future product lineup with more niche models.
VW wants to eliminate 20,000 positions over the next three years in its western Germany vehicle-assembly and component plants.
On Feb. 10, Pischetsrieder said traditional VW plants in Germany are too inefficient, and in some cases, component plants are far from economical.
Bernd Osterloh, head of the VW works council, said VW management wants to sell its Germany operations that make plastic parts, exhaust systems and casting operations.
But engineering and transmission operations are an essential element of VW's business and will not be sold, Pischetsrieder said at the annual VW press conference in March.
German media reports suggest that workers' representatives want to delay the vote until after VW's management decides which component plants it will close.
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