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Union hails Quebec investment in Bombardier and urges Stormont to heed lessons

Published 30/10/2015

The investment will secure jobs at Bombardier
The investment will secure jobs at Bombardier

The Quebec government's one billion US dollar investment (£651,000) in Bombardier is a lesson for Stormont politicians, trade unionists said.

The Canadian regional administration intervened to support the Montreal-headquartered firm's C Series next generation jet development.

It will safeguard jobs in Northern Ireland, where the wings are made, Unite said.

Regional officer Davy Thompson said: "Unite commends the Quebec government on their willingness to intervene to support this strategically important industry.

"Their action demonstrates how government can safeguard employment and support the manufacturing sector; it is a lesson that politicians in Stormont should heed in regard to the manufacturing sector here which continues to struggle with high energy costs and the effects of the low euro."

Bombardier is Northern Ireland's largest manufacturing employer, at more than 5,000 people.

There had been uncertainty over the production of the narrow-bodied passenger plane known as the C Series.

The Quebec government has conditionally agreed to buy a 49.5% equity stake in a limited partnership established to complete the C Series programme.

The investment has been approved by the board of directors of Bombardier and the Cabinet of the Government of Quebec but remains conditional upon the completion of definitive agreements, the completion of an internal reorganisation and other steps.

Mr Thompson added: "It is widely known that Bombardier's C Series has experienced delays in generating the sales initially envisaged and that this has resulted in pressures on the company's balance-sheet leading to speculation about the company's future.

"We are hopeful that this investment by the Quebec government will give Bombardier the time to achieve its sales targets for the C Series and will safeguard the long-term employment of the workforce here."

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