Belfast Telegraph

Friday 29 August 2014

Pharma giant to cut 700 jobs in UK

Pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca is to cut 700 jobs in the UK over the next three years and invest £330m.

The company, which employs 6,700 in the UK at eight sites, said it is opening a new research and development centre in Cambridge.

Around 1,600 jobs will be relocated to Cambridge from its base at Alderley Park in Cheshire.

The firm stressed its long-term commitment to the UK, but the announcement was attacked by trade unions, which complained that high-quality jobs were being lost from the north west.

Pascal Soriot, chief executive officer of AstraZeneca, said: "The changes we are proposing represent an exciting opportunity to put science at the heart of everything we do because our long-term success depends on improving R&D and achieving scientific leadership.

"This is a major investment in the future of this company that will enable us to accelerate innovation by improving collaboration, reducing complexity and speeding up decision-making.

But Unite national officer Linda McCulloch described AstraZeneca's decision to relocate over a thousand jobs to Cambridge as "a massive blow for the north west".

GMB national officer Allan Black said: "This is disastrous news for the UK, and for the north west."

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