IF Metall: Issues written invitation to PM and meets with Antonov (Updated with news of Muller)

TTela continues to keep close vigil on all things related to Saab and today features no less than two three articles concerning one of the biggest unions organizing Saab employees. UPDATE at the end.

First story is about IF Metall’s invitation to Sweden’s PM. They decided to formally invite him since he had so far declined their first invitation. We fully understand the PM has a strained schedule. We thus offer a certain degree of flexibility concerning the time, but the visit ought to occur as soon as possible ends Håkan Skött’s letter. All here at SU wish them the best of luck and we hope the PM will finally man up and face the music.

Antonov took the opportunity to meet with IF Metall’s chairman Stefan Lövén this afternoon. Stefan Lövén emphasized the importance of bringing in Antonov. First they said the government should not interfere with private businesses. Now however, when there is a solution in sight, they choose to intervene, but not to ease Saab’s burden.

According to Mr Lövén, Antonov said Saab’s heritage is important to the brand. Both development and production will continue in Sweden. It is of the greatest importance that production remains in Trollhättan

Update: Finally, even Muller has had some meetings today. Victor met with representatives of the Chinese government, NDRC. NDRC has also made an appointment with Maud Olofsson. An approval from NDRC is needed for Saab to proceed with Youngman and Pang Da.

…so Reinfeldt can’t be bothered to drive his BMW to Trollhättan and meet with the union representatives, but NDRC happily travels half way around the world in order to stretch out a helping hand? The contrast is startling.

Thanks Audun for the tips!

61 thoughts on “IF Metall: Issues written invitation to PM and meets with Antonov (Updated with news of Muller)”

  1. Antonov said Saab’s heritage is important to the brand. Both development and production will continue in Sweden. “It is of the greatest importance that production remains in Trollhättan”

    This is exactly as I predicted. And it’s further encouraging to see him stating this upfront. Aside from a sales and standpoint of appealing to customers: there is also too much invested in the Trollhättan factory to discard it in favor of cheaper production elsewhere.

    The fact that VA feels he is in the position where he can state this, with confidence, should be further encouraging for all of us.

    • ryanonsrc,
      You have hit the nail squarely on it;s head with your re-posting of Antonov’s comment and your emphasis on same. What is a little sad to me is that others have not picked up on this to any degree. This is what makes Saabs Saabs! Saabs are a Swedish automobile, not some multicultural monstrosity that looks the same as every thing else. I know that’s a politically incorrect statement, but isn’t it the truth?

  2. If IF Metall can convince the Swedish PM to visit Saab I think it would be a great opportunity for Saab to offer him a brand new Jet Black 9-5 at no cost to him. Imagine the publicity if he even tried to turn it down. A bit of a coup for Saab!

    I hope he has the “cajones” to pay a visit to the fine people at Saab in support of Swedish industry and forgets about giving billions to help Greece out of its self inflicted mess!!!

  3. a little off topic here guys have u ever wondered how a saab would look with the color falu rödfärg as paint and white rims and interior!!???? sorry dont know how to translate falu rödfärg better then falu red color!!! CHEERS

  4. so Reinfeldt can’t be bothered to drive his BMW to Trollhättan and meet with the union representatives

    Feinfeldt drives BMW!? That’s just appalling. As much as I will complain about the US government officials, one thing I can give them credit for is that they drive cars from Ford and GM. Cadillac Escalades (which may be gas hogs but still pretty nice) have become very iconic as vehicles of US official business. Feinfeldt seems to be publicly giving Saab the finger. Pretty stupid if you ask me.

    but NDRC happily travels half way around the world in order to stretch out a helping hand? The contrast is startling.

    Well to be honest, I am not sure what the motives are behind the Chinese government’s involvement in Saab, so I’m going to reserve judgment on how nice it is that they are offering help. That being said, I’m hoping that the government’s involvement is merely a formality and that most of the interest in Saab is Capitalist by nature, as opposed to being largely an interest by the state. Perhaps its naive of me to make such a distinction but I’ve always been the optimist 🙂

  5. too little too late for some of the staff at a major UK retailer……even a last minute rabbit out of the hat event wont stop the re-structuring ie staff layoffs. This hole fiasco has cost much already but the effects will ripple on for some time to come. The damage has been done and it will take months at best to get back to where we were a couple of months back.

  6. I seem to recall reading that all the current Swedish government cars are BMWs, no? There was a bidding process and the government choose BMWs over Volvos and SAABs among other brands if I recall what I read here correctly.

    That would never EVER happen in the US. I can’t imagine any federal government agency buying any vehicles not manufactured by Chrysler, Ford or GM. Most politicians would rather be caught burning the American flag than be seen driving a BMW or any import as the personal car.

    I fully understand the concept of a world economy and further understand that a Toyota Camry might me more “American” than a Chrysler 300. Still, I think most American people would see the government buying imported cars similar to a parent telling their own child they are ugly and stupid; its just wrong and sends the wrong message on many levels. I think it you told the average American that the Swedish government bought BMWs for their official vehicles over Volvos and SAABs most would find that nothing less than shocking and not because of some misplaced patriotism either. It would seem shocking because the company and their products = the people who pay the taxes and elect the government. The government would be spitting in the face of the very people who not only “hired” them, but also pay their salary.

    • I keep telling people here in Sweden the same thing. It could only happen here, not Germany, Italy or France either.
      When Maud stated that Volvo and Saab were in trouble “because they built the wrong cars” she actually owned a Ford Focus Flexifuel AKA the exact same driveline and size as the Volvo V50. Stupid, isn´t it?

      • Henrik, if it makes you feel better our Miss Nancy Pelosi a Democratic leader was trying to get the Congress to give her a Boeing 757 for her weekend commute to her home in California.

        The Grumman G III that she had been assigned had to make one fuel stop on the flight from Washington to California and that upset her so.

        If you wonder why I don’t get upset when I hear about a Focus Flexifuel, think of the Boeing. Look what we deal with.

        • Not to get too off topic, but it does seem to be endemic to politicos! That’s almost as bad as Gingrich whining about not being allowed to fly on AirForce One (the President’s plane) when Bill Clinton’s mom died.

          Is there an independent investigatory committe that could look into Maud’s possible conflict of interest re: windmills? Sweden must have something like that.

    • There’s actually a law about this, “Lagen om offentlig upphandling“, based on an EU directive. It states that public sector purchases of all items above a certain price limit must be announced publicly, the specific demands on the product must be listed, and the choice of supplier must be based on a fair assessment of the stipulated demands and not on any personal or patriotic preferences.

      As far as I know, Sweden is the only country in the EU to really take this law seriously. The same applies to a bunch of other EU laws as well, that other countries think of as suggestions but Sweden feels obliged to honour to the letter. I guess this says something about the Swedish mentality, but I’m not sure I want to follow through on that thought…

          • We had a similar law before we became members of the EU, but you probably know that; however it’s true about the EU directive, and I agree about your last paragraph in your other post. Good of course, if large values are involved, but everyone should be following the same rules.
            Also, about the cars; I think I’ve read about some “excuses” earlier, that they needed cars that could be equipped with protection etc. etc. Not that that should be a problem with one of those from Sweden, but they tried to imply that.

          • UK has followed such rules for years. I used to work for a govt dept 20 odd years ago and we used to insist on British made cars (Ford, Vauxhall, Rover & Peugeot).
            It wasn’t long before we had to expand the selection process to cover all EU manufactured cars because of EU directives.

    • The most important part:

      Men än är det för tidigt att prata om tillverkning i Baltikum, poängterar Antonov. Först när fabriken i Trollhättan nått sin produktionskapacitet på 200 000 bilar per år kan frågan bli aktuell.

      VA wants to build Saabs in Baltic, but only after THN is running at full (200.000 / year) capacity.

  7. Yes how true….all governments in Europe flaunt their own national cars may it be the French or Germans….what better way to have exposure than ministers and MPs coming and going in front of TV cameras and photographers. That`s what Saab needs.

  8. All madness on a little stick, but our current prime minister here in the NL is a pretty good ambassador for SAAB… He owned one since before he was elected in office, and repeatedly stated he’d keep it as a private car because it’s such fun to drive… (He must be utterly bored now on the back seat of his official car, a MBs600 guard)
    As a matter of fact he even offered a ride around in his private car, as part of a charity radio programm, called “serious request”, that listeners could bid on. He personally drove the highest bidder around the hague in his white 9-3.
    Mr Reinfeldt should have a good look at his dutch collegue…

    • It never fails; when you get to know that someone drives a Saab, I had read about this case earlier though, you think: “hmm, seems to be nice guy”; of course, in some cases you already know it, but that’s the reaction over here. 🙂

  9. I have today ordered a 9-5 SC, TTID Aero. Carbon Grey with Shark Grey leather, navigation, drivesense, technology-package etc.

    I hope i have it before christmas but its worth waiting for.

    Save SAAB – Griffin up.

  10. Actually the Fed govt has contracted to purchase a few hundred Nissan Leafs- not certain why they didnt just make the whole order of cars for all Chevy Volts since there is no range anxiety, but i dont appreciate my tax dollars buying a car thats not at the very least assembled on in the US if its not a US coporation.

    Now- spending my hard earned dollars on a foreign owned, foreign assembled car is my God given right in the land of the free and home of the brave! 🙂

    • Yeah, I totally agree. It’s an important distinction to make been US government employee vehicles and those purchased by private US citizens.

        • yes- LOL- I know I stil sound like a double standard though in wanting my tax dollars to benefit American enterprise- The best thing about SAABs former GM ownership is that it was so much easier to justify the import brand in the garage (althoughwife’s/ Denise’s 9-7x is more American than some of GM’s other domestic car lines)

  11. @ Börjesson: It would be fairly simple to circumvent tendering rules for public tender if a Swedish public authority wish to support Saab or Volvo by driving their cars.

    For example, one could in the specifications require that the cars due to the Swedish weather must have front wheel drive. So is BMW and Mercedes certainly out of the picture. So, just missing a parameter that would exclude the Audi, and there are only Saab and Volvo back to choose from. Rear leg space? Width of luggage compartment? Mileage? Simple!!!

    So if the government and the public authorities really wanted to drive Swedish cars, they easily could!

    I believe that’s how they do it in Germany (Audi / BMW / Mercedes), France (Peugeot / Renault / Citroen), Italy (Fiat / Alfa Romeo) and Czech Republic (Skoda).

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