General Motors Korea will begin accepting voluntary retirement applications from its office workers in light of changing market conditions, a company spokesperson told Yonhap News Agency Friday.
Applications will be accepted until February 28 from employees in non-manufacturing sectors of the company and employees holding managerial positions at assembly lines. The program marks the GM subsidiary’s fourth round of job cuts since 2009, and the announcement follows remarks made by GM Korea CEO, Sergio Rocha, late last year stating that the automaker would begin accepting applications for early retirement in the first quarter of 2014.
GM’s decision to pull the Chevrolet brand out of Europe sparked mild concern at the company’s Korean arm as most of the Chevy models sold in Europe are made there. The decision is expected to result in a 20 percent production drop at GM’s Korean manufacturing operations by 2015. However, GM Korea emphasized that the voluntary retirement program being discussed here is not meant for production line employees, and is instead meant for office staff. The automaker also confirmed that it currently has no plans to lay off workers.
Voluntary retirees will receive a severance package, though the amounts will differ depending on how long they have worked for the company. All employees will also be granted a 10 million won ($9, 300 USD) voucher that can be used to buy a new Chevrolet vehicle and a two year tuition coverage for children.
“Those who joined the company in or before 1989 will get three years’ pay, while those that were hired from 1990 through 1998 will get 2.5 years worth of pay if they opt to leave,” a source told YNA.