Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) is looking to restart some vehicle production from next week at three plants located in Italy if it gets the green light from the government, a union representative stated on Monday.
Previously this month, Italy banned travel in the country and ordered a halt on all business activities deemed non-essential, including the auto industry, until April 3 to stop the spread of coronavirus.
The automaker informed unions last week that if the government gave it the go-ahead, then they would be ready to restart some of its operations on April 6, Gianluca Ficco, a representative for metal workers union UILM, stated.
The sites concerned would be the assembly line for the Jeep Compass in Melfi located in southern Italy, Atessa’s plant making light commercial vehicles in central part of the country and preparatory operations for the new electric 500 in Turin’s Mirafiori factory, he stated.
A spokesman for FCA confirmed that as of now, the plan was to restart those three lines next week.
However, Ficco stated he did not know if the government would permit non-essential activities to resume then and thought Rome was more likely to increase the duration of the ban.
“In any case, when operations restart, FCA will have to make sure that the highest health and safety conditions are assured in all factories,” he stated. “Safety devices will have to be increased for sure”.
Luxury automaker Ferrari, which, like FCA, is controlled by Exor, the investment firm of the country’s Agnelli family, said on Friday it would resume its two Italian plants on April 14, given it had supplies.
Exor stated last week that current plant shut downs at companies it controls, though temporary, might continue.
Coronavirus has so far infected more than 837,016 people and killed more than 41,238 people worldwide. In Italy, it has killed 12,428 and infected 105,792 people.