The head of the Canadian Auto Workers union says he doesn’t want to speculate on what the union will give up in negotiations with Chrysler, which are underway again after a three-week break.

Ken Lewenza has previously insisted his union will stick to the pattern established in a deal with General Motors last month, but he seemed to soften his stance yesterday.

“I don’t want to speculate at this particular time,” Lewenza said when asked whether he would refuse to bend from pattern bargaining. “Things are shifting enormously, especially with our UAW colleagues in the U.S.”

Chrysler has insisted the company needs to reduce labour costs by $19 an hour to be competitive with non-unionized assembly plants in Canada.