Germany's Merkel calls PSA group CEO over Opel takeover

Chancellor Angela Merkel has called the chief executive of PSA Group, the maker of Peugeot and Citroen cars, to discuss its potential takeover of General Motors' German subsidiary.

Merkel's spokesman said PSA boss Carlos Tavares told her Tuesday that the Opel unit would remain independent within the group.

The spokesman, Steffen Seibert, said Tavares also assured Merkel that PSA would safeguard Opel's sites and planned investments and "honor job guarantees."

The statement didn't elaborate further or divulge what Merkel told Tavares.

Germany's economy minister, Brigitte Zypries, is to travel to Paris on Thursday to discuss the takeover with her French counterpart.

Opel employs 19,000 people in Germany out of a total workforce of 38,000. And it's an election year in Germany, so politicians are particularly sensitive to possible job losses.