Renault closes site, restructures factories in France in bid to slash costs
UNTV News • May 29, 2020 • 414
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Renault said on Friday (May 29) it was launching talks with unions to restructure several French car plants, as it confirmed plans to cut around 15,000 jobs worldwide and the closure of one France plant.
Faced with a slump in demand that has been exacerbated by the coronavirus crisis, Renault is aiming to find 2 billion euros ($2.22 billion) in savings over the next three years as it shrinks production and hones in on key car models.
Speaking at a news conference on Friday, Interim Chief Executive Clotilde Delbos said 4,600 jobs in France are in peril of being cut.
Renault Group Board of Directors Chair Jean-Dominique Senard hailed the cost-reduction plan to be both “defensive” and “offensive,” as he announced the closure of the Choisy-le-Roi factory, which manufactures motors, the sole plant to halt activity out of Renault’s 14 plant sites.
Senard said though that the Caudan site in Brittany, which was also threatened of closing will maintain operations, adding that Renault is working with the regional government to think about the future of the plant. (Reuters)
MANILA, Philippines – Declaring the Philippines as the next possible epicenter of the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic in Southeast Asia is speculative, the government’s testing czar Vince Dizon said Thursday.
Dizon issued the statement in response to a report from Singapore-based The Straits Times which claimed that the Philippines could soon become the new virus epicenter in Southeast Asian region due to the continued increase in COVID-19 infections.
The Philippines on Thursday reported 3,561 additional infections, bringing the total number of cases to 119,460. Of the total number, 50,473 are active cases.
Dizon pointed out that the increase in the country’s coronavirus infections is only “normal” due to improved testing capacity and increased contact among the public following the relaxation of community quarantine measures to reopen the slumping economy.
“Speculative ‘yun pero ang masasabi ko, dumami na ang testing natin. Tayo na ang pinakamataas sa Southeast Asia sa testing per day. Nasa halos 1.7 million na ang nate-test natin sa buong bansa. Mahigit 1 million diyan ay nasa NCR (National Capital Region) lamang at tuluy-tuloy nating gagawin ito,” he said during a press briefing.
“Habang tayo ay nagtetest, talagang marami tayong makikitang positibo. Pero mas importante ‘yun kasi kung hindi natin sila mahahanap at hindi natin sila mai-isolate e lalong kakalat at lalong dadami ang magkakasakit,” he added.
The government has re-imposed stricter community quarantine measures over Metro Manila and nearby areas until August 18 in the hopes of arresting the rising cases of COVID-19.
The move follows the call of the medical community for a timeout to recuperate from the exhausting battle against the pandemic. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Aiko Miguel)
MANILA, Philippines – The Senate on Tuesday approved on third and final reading the proposed Bayanihan to Recover as One (Bayanihan 2) bill which seeks to extend the powers granted to the Duterte administration to respond to the coronavirus pandemic.
Twenty-two senators voted to pass the measure while Senator Francis Pangilinan was the lone dissenter.
The upper chamber passed the bill a day after President Rodrigo Duterte appealed to legislators to expedite its passage during his fifth State of the Nation Address (SONA).
Under the Bayanihan 2 bill, the allocation of a P140-billion standby fund is proposed to help sectors and industries heavily-hit by the pandemic. It also seeks to provide funds for the procurement of additional COVID-19 testing equipment as well as the implementation of assistance programs for displaced workers, low-income households and other sectors. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Harlene Delgado)
Several hundred Nokia workers protested in Paris on Wednesday (July 8) against plans to cut over 1,200 jobs in its French subsidiary Alcatel-Lucent International.
Nokia has said most of the layoffs would come from research and development (R&D) teams. Unions say this is incomprehensible when Europe is preparing to deploy the next generation mobile network.
Member of the French parliament from the ruling party LaRem, Eric Bothorel, who was elected in the northwestern region of Côtes-d’Armor, where there are planned job cuts, said Nokia’s announcement came just after the date set releasing the company from commitments to preserve jobs.
Nokia was bound to job retention commitments when it acquired Alcatel Lucent in 2015. They expired in June.
Bothorel said the move was “making fun of the government” as it targeted people who were recently hired.
Nokia says it will continue to be a major employer in France with a strong foothold in R&D. (Reuters)
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