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Eastman Chemical Workington Closure Threat

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

GMB In Talks With Eastman Chemicals On Closure Of Workington Site With The Loss Of 150 Jobs

GMB has an enhanced redundancy package in place but that will not go far to soften the blow to the families of the workers and the impact on the local community.

Following the announcement today that Eastman Chemical Company in Workington with closure, GMB Shop Stewards met with the local full time officer to begin the process of consultation.

Eastman manufactures Estron(TM) acetate tow, which is a fibrous material used to manufacture cigarette filter rods. See Notes to Editors for full text of the announcement from Eastman Chemicals,

Dan Gow, GMB Organiser said, “GMB members are shocked by the news of a complete closure of the Eastman Chemicals site in Workington and the loss of their 150 jobs. The company is blaming the closure on a worldwide down turn in demand despite the company currently being in profit.

GMB already has an enhanced redundancy package in place but that will not go far to soften the blow to the families of the workers and the impact on the local community.

GMB will be looking for a full consultation procedure and asking for a rethink on total closure.”


Ends

Contact: Dan Gow, GMB Organiser on 07506 711676 or GMB Press Office on 07974 251823.

Notes to Editors:

Text of today’s Eastman Chemical Company Announcement

Eastman Chemical Company (EMN) today announced it will begin a consultation period regarding a proposal to close its Workington, U.K., acetate tow manufacturing facility. The proposed closure of the site is in response to changes in global market demand for acetate tow.

"With recent and announced global acetate tow manufacturing capacity additions, we need less capacity to supply our customers," said Linda Hensley, vice president and general manager of the Fibers segment.

Eastman also manufactures acetate tow at its facilities in Kingsport, Tenn., and Ulsan, Korea. Eastman`s global acetate tow capacity is 210,000 metric tons including the Workington, UK, site which produces 24,000 metric tons. In addition, Eastman`s joint venture with China National Tobacco Company in Heifei, China, has 30,000 metric tons of acetate tow manufacturing capacity.

"Eastman remains committed to reliably supplying all customers with top quality products during and following this consultation process," Hensley said.

Eastman has informed the trade union and will work with union and employee representatives throughout the consultation period.

"We will be doing all we can to support employees throughout this consultation process to ensure they are treated with the respect they deserve," Hensley added. "Eastman`s consideration of a possible closure of the Workington plant is not a reflection of the performance of the employees who work at the site."

Eastman manufactures Estron(TM) acetate tow, which is a fibrous material downstream customers use to manufacture cigarette filter rods.

Eastman is a global specialty chemical company that produces a broad range of products found in items people use every day. With a portfolio of specialty businesses, Eastman works with customers to deliver innovative products and solutions while maintaining a commitment to safety and sustainability. Its market-driven approaches take advantage of world-class technology platforms and leading positions in attractive end-markets such as transportation, building and construction, and consumables. Eastman focuses on creating consistent, superior value for all stakeholders. As a globally diverse company, Eastman serves customers in approximately 100 countries and had 2014 revenues of approximately $9.5 billion. The company is headquartered in Kingsport, Tennessee, USA and employs approximately 15,000 people around the world. For more information, visit www.eastman.com.

 

 

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