Protests staged against closure of BMW pension scheme

Employees of BMW based in the UK have staged protests at several plants across the country against the decision by the German carmaker to close the defined benefit pension scheme to new members in Britain. The announcement of the closure was made six months ago, affecting 5,000 staff.

A protest against these measures was led by Unite union members at the Mini plant in Cowley and the Hams Hall engine plant near Birmingham. They are being balloted on the deal along with union members at the Farnborough, Goodwood and Swindon plants, with the vote closing on March 31st. 

Unite officer Tony Murphy contrasted the proposed move to a less generous defined contribution scheme with an 8% rise in BMW's profits. He said: "The UK workforce has contributed massively to BMW Group’s record sales and revenues and deserves better than BMW’s broken pension promises and pleas of poverty." He called on BMW to negotiate a better solution with the union.