European slowdown hits manufacturing

Turin, Italy: Difficult trading in Europe is forcing manufacgturers to reduce capacity and cut production output.

Iveco, Fiat Industrial’s truck unit, will close five truck plants in three European countries by the end of the year to adapt its manufacturing footprint to Europe’s plummeting truck sales.

Iveco chief executive Alfredo Altavilla said on Sunday, speaking at the presentation of the company’s new Stralis truck, that about 1,075 workers would be affected but Iveco’s plans for Spanish production would not change.

It plans a €500m investment in Spain hiring 1,100 staff.  Planned plant closures are in Chambery, France; Gratz, Austria, as well as Ulm, Weisveil and Goerlitz, all in Germany.

• Galway, Co Galway, Ireland: Thermo King is seeking 30 job cuts from its Galway plant. Managers and union representatives met to discuss plans for up to 18 permanent and 12 temporary staff to be laid off. A final agreement is set to be ironed out at a meeting between management and representatives of the Unite trade union on Wednesday,

“It is another sign of the never-ending recession across Europe,” says Unite spokesman Brian Gormley yesterday.

“Thermo King’s main markets are in Europe, Saudi Arabia, and Japan, and unfortunately the company is suffering from what’s going on across Europe.”