The group announced this on Wednesday. At the Saarland site with 4,600 employees, production of the Focus combustion engine model will end in 2025. State politicians and employee representatives had hoped that the jobs would then be largely secured thanks to electrical investments. Management’s decision has now dashed that hope.

Ford Europe boss Stuart Rowley told the dpa that the vote in favor of Valencia was not a decision to close the Saarlouis location. “We are now trying to find ways to give as many affected workers as possible a future.”

From a technical and strategic point of view, both locations were on par, but from a financial point of view Valencia has advantages for the group. After the fundamental decision, restructuring is now pending in Valencia. The investment sum and the specific car model are still unclear.

When asked whether Saarlouis still had a future in the Ford Group after 2025, Rowley said that a task force would now be set up and how to proceed with the employee representatives and the Saarland state government would be discussed. Look at opportunities that lie inside and outside of Ford.

The Saarland plant now faces an uncertain future. Things are looking better at Ford’s European headquarters in Cologne: This location, which is about three times as large, is to be strengthened with an investment worth billions, as was announced last year.

According to a media report, after the cutback in gas supplies to Germany, the federal government wants to announce the second stage of the gas emergency plan.

Finance Minister Christian Lindner (FDP) has now declared that Germany will not agree to a ban on internal combustion engines. A few hours earlier, Environment Minister Steffi Lemke (Greens) said the opposite. The focus of the dispute is the use of synthetic substances, so-called e-fuels.

Before the meeting of health ministers on Wednesday and Thursday, four countries are calling for a concrete corona roadmap for autumn and winter, including the obligation to wear masks, contact restrictions and compulsory testing. Health Minister Lauterbach has also drawn up a seven-point plan.