Graeme Brown, Birmingham Post, 20th May, 2009
LDV workers are being paid two weeks’ wages this week after the company successfully withdrew its application for administration. The Washwood Heath van maker, which announced this week it plans to resume production in July, processed the payment after finally putting an end to court hearings over its future.
Meanwhile, workers are eagerly awaiting the result of ongoing talks, as Malaysian group Weststar seeks to buy the firm from Russian owner GAZ. A statement on the company’s blog said: “It can now be confirmed that LDV was able to process the two weeks’ outstanding wages for all employees last night. We have been told that this should appear in your bank accounts by Thursday at the latest.”
LDV’s plant has been shut down since December after demand for its Maxus range of vans was hit by the recession. Directors of the company applied to go into administration last month after being hit hard by the recession, but that was formally withdrawn at Birmingham County Court on Monday.
LDV’s plans for environmentally-friendly commercial vehicles are very exciting and we have the real prospect of Birmingham becoming a major global centre for the production of electric vans. After many months of almost wall-to-wall bad news this is a genuine cause for hope and celebration.” Hamid Salim of the West Midlands Minority Ethnic Business Forum
LDV is continuing to operate while talks continue over its future after agreeing Government loan guarantees for essential payments like bills and wages for its 850 employees. Representatives from Weststar have been in Birmingham after agreeing a deal with GAZ, but union leaders fear as many as 20 per cent of the workforce could be culled if the deal goes through, because of reduced production. Weststar LDV Managing Director Datuk Seri Syed Azman has posted on LDV’s blog that he sees the firm’s workers as its “greatest asset”.
The Birmingham Post reported earlier this week that LDV plans to restart production this summer. Hamid Salim, of the West Midlands Minority Ethnic Business Forum, said news that LDV planned to restart production was “great” for the region and added: “LDV’s plans for environmentally-friendly commercial vehicles are very exciting and we have the real prospect of Birmingham becoming a major global centre for the production of electric vans. After many months of almost wall-to-wall bad news this is a genuine cause for hope and celebration.”
[Source: Birmingham Post]
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