100 Jobs to Go From Michelin Canada Plant
Michelin will cut 100 jobs from its Granton facility in Nova Scotia, Canada later this year in a move the company says is necessary to keep it competitive in the marketplace. According to Michelin, about 70 per cent of those losing their jobs will be offered early retirement, with the remaining cuts coming through the axing of contract positions.
The Granton plant, which produces passenger car and light truck tyres, as well as rubber compound for other tyre lines, currently employs some 1400 staff, half of whom are, Michelin claim, eligible to retire within the next five years. Company manager of corporate communications Sheri Somerville, speaking to Canadian broadcaster CBC, claimed Michelin are “not laying anyone off and we are not forcing anyone to retire,” and added that the cuts and retirements will give younger workers at the plant increased opportunities to advance. However some employees have voiced the opinion that many will be coerced into retirement despite wanting to continue working.
Somerville states that these measures are necessary to keep the Granton plant competitive in the face of competition from lower-cost tyremakers based in Asia. “We have to look at ways of improving our productivity, reducing our costs and being more innovative to remain competitive in the future,” she said. The decision to reduce the number of workers at Granton comes only weeks after the company announced a $3 per hour pay cut for employees hired on or after May 1, 2007.
Late last year Michelin celebrated the 35th anniversary of operations at its Granton facility, where the company’s Canadian administrative and purchasing headquarters are also located. The tyremaker recently invested over $100 million in the Granton plant, including the addition of a new tyre line and a rubber mixing facility.