F&P confirms job losses
Fisher & Paykel Appliances has confirmed it will make 29 workers redundant from its refrigeration base in Auckland as the firm moves some work to Thailand.
Members of FIRST Union and the Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union said it had been told one of the production lines was being discontinued.
Fisher & Paykel Appliances said that was incorrect, but job cuts had resulted from a change to its operation, with some of the refrigeration models made her moving to an overseas manufacturing plant, said chief executive Stuart Broadhurst.
He said the company needed to be able to review where production was best located and adjust accordingly.
The production improvements that could be made in Thailand could not be done in New Zealand without adding costs, he said.
''There are product improvements that mean the new generation of product need to be made in that production facility.''
Union officials criticised the move, saying it was an example of more work being sent to a low-wage economy.
Fisher and Paykel Appliances moved part of its manufacturing to Mexico and Thailand a number of years ago, partly to improve logistics.
But Robert Reid, General Secretary of FIRST Union, said F&P was also paying its workers in Thailand less than Kiwi workers.
He said he was helping the Thai workers form a union to campaign for better wages.
"We are doubly disappointed that not only is Fisher & Paykel exiting from good jobs that are paid well above the minimum wage in New Zealand, but when it goes to Thailand, it is refusing to collectively bargain for any wage rate, other than the minimum wage in that region of the country."
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