Ford-owned premium brand Volvo will see the largest job losses in the firm’s history, about 1200 of them at its Gothenburg, Sweden, operations. In total, 1400 white-collar and 600 blue-collar staff will go as part of a global cost reduction programme to save about $662m.

While parent company Ford is scaling back operations in more mature markets, it is pursuing an expansion strategy across emerging markets. It is predicted that by 2014, Asia-Pacific and Africa will contribute more than 10.5 million units, representing 70% of the total global growth of the automotive industry.