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GM contract talks with UAW may prove difficult

Contract negotiators for General Motors and the United Auto Workers (UAW) hope for an agreement within a week, patterned after that between the UAW and Ford in February. But talks may not go as smoothly or as quickly as expected, Monitor correspondent Ed Townsend reported.

Union negotiators want GM to go further than Ford did on plant closings, to spell out profit-sharing plans in more detail, and to give the UAW a voice in management decisions relating to jobs.

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General Motors has made clear that it does not intend to go beyond the terms in the Ford settlement, which it says does little to narrow the $8-an-hour labor-cost advantage enjoyed by Japanese auto companies.

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