Belfast Telegraph

HCL denies Northern Ireland job losses related to expansion in Republic

HCL Technologies has denied that the announcement of job losses in Northern Ireland is related to the creation of more than 200 positions in the Republic.

The firm said yesterday that there was no connection between the plan to set up in Kilkenny creating 220 jobs and the announcement of redundancies at call centres in Belfast and Armagh.

The firm said it hoped to keep 170 of the 420 jobs in Northern Ireland

The Republic's Environment Minister Phil Hogan revealed on Wednesday that the 220 new hi-tech jobs were to be created in his Kilkenny constituency before the deal between the IDA and the global firm was official.

The statement led to anger among Northern Ireland politicians, who claimed that the posts lost to Armagh were being "replaced job-for-job in Kilkenny".

But a spokesman for HCL Technologies insisted there was no link between the two announcements.

"The proposed investment by HCL Technologies in Kilkenny is not connected to the business operated by HCL-BPO (Northern Ireland) Ltd and there is no question of jobs being created there instead of in Northern Ireland," he said.

The spokesman added that the job losses in Northern Ireland were as a result of local business conditions "which were outside the company's control".

Mr Hogan announced that new jobs were being created in his local newspaper before the IDA or the firm had officially signed off on the deal.

He said that the company would create 120 new jobs immediately, and this would increase to 220 over two years at Danville Business Park.

Last night Mr Hogan said the jobs were "genuine" -- and he hoped people in his Carlow-Kilkenny constituency would gain employment there.

Belfast Telegraph