Half of Nissan workers, with the future up in the air

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A total of 1,250 former Nissan employees (TYO:7201) in Barcelona are waiting to be hired by the electromobility center, which has already committed to incorporate about 600 this year while formulas are studied to not leave anyone without income when they exhaust unemployment at the end of the year.

Once awarded the management of the land occupied by Nissan in the Zona Franca of Barcelona, the reindustrialization process faces a new stage marked by the calendar of the start-up of the new industrial activity, promoted by QEV Technologies and BTech.


The hiring of former Nissan workers has thus become the main concern, especially for unions, which fear that if imaginative formulas are not sought, a part of the workforce could be left without income before their relocation.

The workers have been consuming the unemployment since the Japanese automaker closed its plants on December 31, 2021, so the benefit will be exhausted at the end of this 2023.

The ERE of Nissan left 2,525 employees without work, of which 1,100 agreed to early retirement and just under 1,400 were waiting for relocation, although about 60 have found other ways out and have renounced this option and another 60 have been hired by the manufacturer of electric motorcycles Silence, which already occupies a part of Zona Franca.

“Hiring has to be accelerated and maximized to make up for lost time in the project award period. We will not consider reindustrialization closed until all workers enter to work on the projects of the ‘hub’ or Silence, “the head of CCOO at the reindustrialization table, Roberto Carlos Pacheco, told EFE.

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The 600 hirings that the center or “hub” has set as a target for 2023 would not cover even half of the workers pending relocation (which right now are 1,250).


Faced with this situation, unions, ‘hub’ and the Department of Enterprise of the Generalitat are studying measures such as offering voluntary reductions in working hours so that work can be distributed and therefore extend hiring.

The working day would be extended when the pace of production of the ‘hub’ increases, which plans to manufacture last-mile electric delivery vans under the Zeroid banner and resurrect the Ebro brand with a “pick up” based on Nissan’s Navara.

Sources of the reindustrialization table have pointed out to EFE that talks are being held with the Generalitat and the SEPE to explore the possibility of giving a salary supplement to employees who agree to reduce the working day.

As explained at the last meeting of the reindustrialization table, another way to “maximize” hiring would be for some Nissan workers to take on cleaning and maintenance tasks that were previously entrusted to subcontractors.


The unions expect that the hiring will begin “imminently” once the final signing of the crossed agreements between the parties involved in the reindustrialization takes place next week, at which time the keys of Zona Franca will be delivered to the ‘hub’.

The same sources of the table have indicated that the ‘hub’ plans to incorporate in the first place between 15 and 20 directors who will analyze the personnel needs and plan the set of hirings.

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It is assumed that the first additions, apart from these ‘managers’, will be employees specialized in maintenance of the machinery that Nissan has transferred to the ‘hub’ and the facilities in general.

All to set up a plant of about 500,000 m2, of which the hub will use about 300,000 m2, while Goodman – the logistics operator that won the Free Trade Zone competition – will directly exploit about 100,000. The rest will be occupied by Nissan’s technical center and Silence’s two-seater vehicle factory.

“Nissan workers are trained to do any job,” said Roberto Carlos Pacheco, who predicts that the production of vehicles of the ‘hub’ will not begin until 2024.

The promoters of the ‘hub’ plan to announce next week the details of the project focused on electric mobility and the contracting calendar.

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