By Nat Shirley
Wednesday, Nov 7th, 2012 @ 4:45 pm
 

With Europe on pace for its worst sales year since 1993, Ford CEO Alan Mulally says the automaker is ready to shutter more factories and cut more jobs in the region should market conditions continue to deteriorate.

Last month, Ford announced plans to shut down a major factory in Genk, Belgium, as well two plants in the UK due to declining European demand. In all, 6,200 employees will lose their jobs due to the closures, which are expected to save Ford $500 million annually by 2015.

While Ford doesn't have any immediate plans to scrap more plants, Mulally told Reuters that the automaker will closely monitor economic conditions in Europe to determine whether more cuts are necessary.

"We don't know if [the problems in Europe] have hit bottom and stabilized or will get worse,'' said Mulally.

"The most important thing is to match our production to the level of demand, otherwise it hurts us and the consumer."

Protesters in Cologne, Germany, where Ford of Europe is headquartered, forcibly entered a Ford factory and injured an employee today in an incident that underscores the tension surrounding the automaker's restructuring efforts.