10/29/2016 12:56 EDT

Shift To Electric Cars Will Cost Thousands Of Jobs: Volkswagen

Electric cars contain fewer components, require fewer workers to build.

BERLIN — Volkswagen's personnel chief has been quoted as telling a German newspaper that the transition to electric cars will ultimately cost a "five-digit number'' of jobs at the company.

Karlheinz Blessing told the daily Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung that electric cars contain fewer components than cars with combustion engines "so in the long term we need fewer employees for production.''

The VW logo on top of a company factory building in Wolfsburg, Germany, Tuesday Nov. 24, 2015. (Photo: Associated Press/Michael Sohn)

Blessing stressed that there will be no layoffs but said the workforce will be reduced. The newspaper quoted him Friday as saying: "It is not about cutting a few hundred jobs ... Viewed over the years, it will be about a five-digit number worldwide.''

VW plans to ramp up its offerings of electric vehicles in the wake of a scandal over diesel cars rigged to cheat on emissions tests.

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