Around 1,300 employees at Alro Slatina could be laid off as aluminium production is cut amid energy crisis

aluminiu alro slatina Sursa:

Around 1,300 employees at Alro Slatina could be sent on temporary unemployment due to the reduction in aluminum production because of electricity problems, the president of the “Aluministul” trade union, Constantin Popescu, announced on Wednesday, quoted by Agerpres. The unions will hold a protest rally on the platform in front of the company’s headquarters

The rally, scheduled to take place on Thursday afternoon, will be attended by employees of the Slatina factory, with the unionists calling on the government to “save Romanian industry”.

The trade unionists claim a “desperate” situation and point out that a 60% reduction in primary aluminum production capacity means “the destruction of Romanian aluminum”, as restarting and reopening the closed units will cost hundreds of millions of dollars.

At the same time, the unionists point out that Alro is cutting production because of “extremely expensive” electricity and a lack of the necessary quantities of energy to sustain the production flow.

“On December 27, 2021, the Board of Directors of Alro SA took the irreversible decision ‘to destroy Romanian aluminum’ by shutting down 60% of production capacity, which is due to extremely expensive electricity and due to the lack of the quantities needed to maintain the production flow,” reads a statement from the Aluministul trade union.

The quoted source mentions that approaches have been made to the Government and the Presidency to regulate the situation, but so far without result, and asks the Prime Minister to “save the Romanian industry”.

“At the same time, a phenomenon that is impossible to stop is arising, namely the sending of more than 1,300 employees on technical unemployment, offering them and their families poverty because it will no longer be possible to hire them and reopen the closed capacities, even if the management declares it is doing so since the investments for restarting are in the order of hundreds of millions of dollars. (…) It is with the respect that we address you, Mr Prime Minister, and we believe that a man like you, hardened in so many difficult missions, is capable and can save the Romanian industry. We see and we cannot remain indifferent as our families are destroyed, left without a source of income for I don’t know how long and with great generosity we receive poverty in return”, the press release reads.

Two days ago, Alro announced that it would reduce its primary aluminum production next year due to the situation in the energy and gas markets, but will implement technological measures to allow a quick and efficient restart when conditions in the energy sector return to normal.

To this end, primary aluminum production activity will be reduced from five electrolysis plants to two.

At the same time, the company’s management has given assurances that it is not considering any redundancies of employees for the time being, but only measures to make more efficient use of the workforce, which may include periods of technical unemployment or the advancement and accumulation of overhauls and repairs.

Energy prices have also started to affect industrial sectors in Romania.

In early December, Azomures Targu Mures, the largest producer of fertilizers used by agriculture and industry, announced that it was preparing to temporarily halt production activities due to the very high price of energy, natural gas, and electricity. Company officials said production would resume “if and when market conditions permit”.


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