Hundreds of jobs at risk at Flintshire's Toyota plant

Reporter:

Kate Forrester

EMERGENCY talks are being planned amid fears that hundreds of jobs may go at one of Flintshire’s biggest factories.

Workers at the Toyota plant on Deeside Industrial Estate, which employs 500 people, are bracing themselves for compulsory redundancies after the Japanese firm announced a ‘surplus’ of 750 posts across the UK.

Company bosses say no final decisions have yet been made, but workers have been told about the situation and now Deeside politicians are preparing to lobby the firm in a bid to save Flintshire jobs.

Job losses at the firm’s Burnaston plant in Derbyshire, where 3,500 workers are based, are also likely.

A Toyota spokesman said: “2009 has been a tough year for Toyota Manufacturing UK.

“We already announced to our employees in 2009 that TMUK will move to a single line operation at the Burnaston plant from August 2010.

“This decision is related to production capacity and efficiency, not to production volumes.

“During a meeting with our employee representatives on Monday we confirmed that we will have a headcount surplus of around 750 members from August onwards.

“The key point of Monday’s discussion was how to manage this situation in order to ensure we have a sustainable business for the long term.”

Alyn and Deeside MP Mark Tami said he will be holding talks with the firm in the coming days.

He added: “I have spoken with the company and received assurances that no decisions have yet been made. Talks are taking place with workers and there is still hope that a marked upward shift in car sales could avert job losses.

“No decision will be made without lengthy and full consideration, and I have asked to be kept informed of any developments.”

Managers are currently in talks with employees and a review of the situation is likely to be completed in March.

Alyn and Deeside AM Carl Sargeant, who is also Wales’ minister for local government, said: “I have asked the Deputy First Minister to look into it with some urgency and will be seeking assurances that the success of the company and the future of the workforce that could be displaced are paramount to him.”

See full story in the Leader

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