The latest automaker in Europe to resort to laying off employees to cope with the difficult economic climate is Suzuki. The Japanese automaker said on Friday that it plans to slash more than 20 percent of its workforce in its Hungarian unit near Budapest –1,179 jobs out of a total workforce of 5,523. “We are facing a drastic drop in orders and needed to adjust our production schedule as a result,” spokeswoman Viktoria Ruska told Reuters. Suzuki, which is one Hungary’s biggest exporters, has rediced its production forecast for 2008 from 300,000 units a year earlier to 282,000.
Next year’s target is even lower as Ruska said that the company expects to produce around 210,000 cars in 2009. The job cuts will take effect on December 8 and are expected to be completed by February 2009.