Ford management likely to settle workers’ dues by end of February

The company has not agreed to employees’ demands so far, but is willing to negotiate further

The US company wants to wind up its India business because it does not see it as a profitable venture. The decision has threatened the livelihood of 5,300 employees. | Representative image

The workers of soon-to-be-closed Ford India Private Ltd have asked the management to compensate them for remaining years of service, but the company is not agreeable to such a demand, saying “it needs to be negotiated”. A settlement is expected by the end of February this year.

Quoting a worker union leader, news agency IANS stated that several rounds of talks have been held between the workers union in Chennai and the management of Ford, which decided to wind up its operations in India last September. The decision is likely to affect the future of 5,300 employees.

The company had two manufacturing plants in India – one in Chennai and the other in Sanand (Gujarat). The Chennai plant has about 3,300 employees while the Sanand unit has about 2,000. The company is also in talks with workers in Sanand, the union leader said.

Also read: Ford decides to wrap up India operations; thousands of jobs at stake


“We have asked for compensation for completed and remaining years of service. The company is not agreeable for the same,” the union leader told the news agency.

Workers fear the compensation amount may not be sufficient given the fact that the money would come in dollars and considering the exchange rate between dollar and the rupee, the outgo will prove insufficient. Ford, however, thinks that most of its workforce is young and the compensation calculated on the basis of years left for retirement will be sufficient.

Also read: Ford pulls over in India; company to retain after-sales op, parts distribution

In September, 2021, Ford India Ltd declared that it will close down vehicle assembly in Sanand by the fourth quarter of 2021 and vehicle and engine manufacturing in Chennai by the second quarter of 2022. The company wants to wind up its India business because it does not see it as a profitable venture.

Tamil Nadu industries minister Thangam Thennarasu said a few days back that foreign carmakers have shown interest in buying out Ford’s vehicle and engine manufacturing facility in Chennai. The minister also said that the Tata Group too is interested in the purchase. “The talks are in the early stages. Eventually, Ford has to take a decision. The Tamil Nadu government is merely a facilitator,” the minister had then said.

Also read: MG Motor India keen to take over Ford plants in Gujarat, TN

Meanwhile, Ford India has declared a holiday for majority workers till January 27. Only about 200 workers have been told to report for work, which mainly includes manufacturing spares for the available cars.