No justification for further job cuts at Kilmarnock engineering plant

2 Nov

Unite Scotland members at Mahle Engine Systems will tell senior management there is no justification to cut more jobs at the Kilmarnock plant at a crucial summit tomorrow morning (Thursday 3rd November).

Top Mahle Director Matthias Langbein has told workers that the Kilmarnock plant’s lucrative bushings operation will be off-shored to sites in Italy and Slovakia, impacting 72 highly-skilled engineering jobs.  This follows last week’s announcement that a £4 million a year contract with Ford for the manufacture of automotive bearings would be phased-out due to price increases, at a cost of 61 jobs

In a fresh twist workers have learned that Mahle has offered profitable parts of the existing Ford contract to the car giant at a reduced price increase in its Slovakia plant, significantly less than the asking price at Kilmarnock.  Now workers have to contend with the double-whammy that Mahle also want to consolidate its lucrative bushings operation to mainland Europe.

Unite Regional Officer Jim Winter said, “Mahle Directors have arrived in Kilmarnock to offshore highly skilled and profitable engineering jobs without consultation – its breathtaking arrogance. 

It is also disgraceful that Mahle are undercutting and asset-stripping Kilmarnock against its sister sites in Italy and Slovakia; sites that do not have the same level of engineering expertise and – in the case of the Dolny Kubin plant in Slovakia – the quality requirements for the manufacturing of components in the automotive industry.

There is absolutely no justification for this whatsoever. Everything Mahle requires for profitable, world-class manufacturing is right here in Kilmarnock and Matthias Langbein should be in no doubt that we will use every means necessary to defend these jobs.”  

Tomorrow’s meeting will take place on-site at the Mahle Kilmarnock Plant from 8AM.

Notes to Editors:

(1)   Mahle manufactures world-class components for the automotive industry; its clients include car manufacturers from the Formula 1 and top-range motor vehicle markets.

(2)   Mahle employs 580 local workers in a variety of highly-skilled engineering and administrative roles.

(3)   To receive a copy of the Mahle ‘Business Simplification Plan’ relating to the Ford contract please email – peter.welsh@unitetheunion.org

For further information: Please contact Unite Regional Industrial Officer Jim Winter on 07739654856, Unite Convenor in Mahle Kilmarnock John Hawkshaw 07805039035 and Peter Welsh, Unite Scotland Campaigns on 0781015931.

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