Belfast Telegraph

Union anger over job cuts at tape manufacturer in Bangor

Thirty four jobs are to go at a masking tape manufacturers in Bangor.

Some parts of the operation are to be transferred to Italy, 3M said.

Most of the posts are due to go before the end of April next year. Managers have also indicated that many of the job-losses may have to be delivered through compulsory redundancy, the union Unite claimed.

Sean Smyth, Unite regional officer, said: "This announcement has come as a cruel shock to the workforce, a third of whom now face the threat of redundancy in the month of Christmas."

He said 3M Bangor has initiated a 45-day consultation on proposals to reduce the workforce by 34 posts.

The firm said its economy range of masking tape manufactured at 3M Bangor has for some time failed to reach its financial performance targets. It confirmed the changes would affect 34 of the 108 positions there.

Paul Williams, director, supply chain operations for 3M, said: "Under our proposals our premium range of masking tape products would continue to be manufactured at Bangor.

"We have worked tirelessly to improve productivity and reduce costs in order to ensure the economy range also remains competitive. It is with great regret, however, that we have concluded this isn't possible.

"We will consult employees in a professional, honest, open and fair manner. We will be sharing our thought processes with them and all employees will have an opportunity to ask questions and contribute views."

Unite union employee representatives have expressed shock and concern over what workers described as a sudden announcement which will reduce employment at the Bangor site by one-third.

Mr Smyth said: "However, the total volume of production of Tier B tape at Bangor is between 16-20% of total production on site, considerably less than the third of the total workforce who now face redundancy."

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