VW labour boss says bonuses should be for everyone or no one

WOLFSBURG, Germany - Volkswagen's works council chief Bernd Osterloh said workers and managers alike should be paid a bonus, flatly rejecting the idea that the carmaker's German workforce was inefficient and being paid too much. "We, as the workforce, have always made it clear: either bonuses for nobody, or bonuses for everybody," Osterloh said at a gathering of VW staff at the company's factory in Wolfsburg, Germany on Wednesday.

Osterloh said workers rejected demands by management to make extra concessions to get a bonus, since any such payment should be compensation for work already done last year, rather than as a reward for future efforts.

Osterloh also dismissed criticism by VW brand chief Herbert Diess that Volkswagen's German factories were too expensive and unproductive, and took a swipe at hedge fund TCI, which last week said the carmaker was in need of a performance hike.

"We don't need clever advice from hedge funds that have bought preference shares in a cloak and dagger manner. I can tell them, they are heartily welcome to discuss the matter with the works council face to face," Osterloh said.