(Adds spokeswoman comments on jobs)
BERLIN, Jan 24 (Reuters) - Volkswagen’s premium brand Audi wants to cut costs by 15 billion euros ($17 billion) by 2022, Germany’s Manager Magazin business monthly reported on Thursday, citing Audi executives.
The cost cuts would help finance projects such as a shift to electromobility at Audi, the magazine said.
A spokeswoman for Audi said cost-cutting plans had not yet been finalised, but that the scale of cuts reported by the magazine was correct.
Savings are particularly important for VW after an emissions scandal and associated fines. It also faces a big bill to make its combustion engines comply with new anti-pollution rules.
Future job vacancies will not be refilled, Manager Magazin said, citing finance chief Alexander Seitz, adding this would result in a 3 percent decrease in Audi’s staff per year, or around 14,000 jobs in five years.
“We reject those numbers,” a spokeswoman for Audi said.
She said Audi’s management was in talks with labour representatives as the company assesses how many workers it will need at its various sites in the future, considering ongoing changes in the automotive sector.
The spokeswoman added that workers at Audi’s plants in Ingolstadt and Neckarsulm still had union-negotiated job guarantees through 2025.
Audi has close to 91,700 employees around the world, of which around 61,500 are based in Germany.
$1 = 0.8814 euros Reporting by Irene Presinger, writing by Riham Alkousaa and Maria Sheahan Editing by Alexandra Hudson and Elaine Hardcastle