GMB Will Mobilise Support From Politicians Across Nottingham And Nottinghamshire To Get Closure Of Imperial Tobacco Overturned
The work of producing 17 billion cigarettes in Nottingham each year is being migrated east to the Polish factory as a cynical ploy to increase profits and for no other reason says GMB.
GMB, the union for tobacco workers in Nottingham, responded to the announcement that Imperial Tobacco is to end cigarette manufacturing in the UK with closure of its factory in Nottingham with the loss of up to 540 jobs. See report from Press Association in notes to editors.
Chris Needham, GMB Regional officer, said “This announcement is a devastating blow to the workforce and their families and to the Nottingham economy. The workers will lose £21m paid out in wages each year and there will be a serious knock on impact across Nottingham at this loss of purchasing power.
GMB will oppose this closure as we believe the work of producing 17 billion cigarettes in Nottingham each year is being migrated east to the Polish factory as a cynical ploy to increase profits and for no other reason.
This company made no less than £3.18 billion profits last year and to make even more money it is simply walking away from Nottingham. This is not acceptable.
GMB will now consult our members and we will be seeking their support to oppose the closure. We will seek to mobilise support from all elected politicians across Nottingham and Nottinghamshire to get this decision overturned.”
Contact Chris Needham on 07966 327974 or 0115 960 7171 or GMB press office 07921 289880
Notes to editors
Report on Press Association 15th April 2014
Imperial Tobacco is to end cigarette manufacturing in the UK after announcing plans to close its factory in Nottingham with the loss of up to 540 jobs.
The Bristol-based company, which employs 1,700 people in the UK, said the factory has the capacity to make 36 billion cigarettes a year but will only produce 17 billion in 2014.
It blamed declining industry volumes in Europe, which have been impacted by increasing regulation and taxation and the growth in illicit trade.
Imperial's history in Nottingham dates back to 1877 when John Player bought a small tobacco manufacturing business in Broad Marsh. It has been at its current site in the city since 1972.
The company said the closure plan will be implemented over the next two years and it will look to redeploy staff where possible.
It is also closing a production site in Nantes, France, where 320 people are employed.
Imperial said it will relocate production in Nottingham to other European factories and outsource distribution operations at the site to a third party.
Chief executive Alison Cooper said the restructuring plans were part of an ongoing drive for savings of £300 million a year from September 2018.
She added: "These projects are an essential part of securing the sustainable future of the business.
"The prospect of job losses is always regrettable and we will be doing all we can to support employees and ensure that they are treated in a fair and responsible manner."
The company, which has 46 manufacturing sites worldwide, closed a cigar factory in Bristol in 2010.
It grew operating profits by 1% to £3.2 billion last year, with revenues down by 1% to £7 billion. Volumes of frontline brands including Davidoff, Lambert & Butler, John Player Special and Gauloises declined 2% to 129 billion