Vauxhall's future remains uncertain

Vauxhall's future remains uncertain

Concerns are mounting for the future of thousands of Vauxhall workers after key talks broke down in Germany.

It had been expected that a new owner of the car manufacturer would be announced following a long meeting with German officials and leading figures from the industry.

However, the German government failed to pick a preferred bidder for Opel - the European arm of the beleaguered US giant General Motors (GM).

Germany's economics minister, Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg, said one of the three bidders for the firm had pulled out leaving Italian car giant Fiat and Canadian car parts maker Magna International bidding for the Vauxhall and Opel businesses.

The remaining suitors said they needed more information from GM and the US Treasury before a recommendation could be made.

Mr zu Guttenberg added that the security was not yet in place to provide billions of dollars worth of loan guarantees for Opel.

Whatever is decided in Germany will have an impact on staff at Vauxhall's UK factories in Luton, Bedfordshire, and Ellesmere Port, Cheshire, where 5,000 people currently work.

It is feared that the German government could give in to election-year pressure with a pledge to protect domestic jobs at the expense of those in the UK.

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