Hundreds of people working for the Košice-based steelmaking plant will lose their jobs by the end of 2021.
In order to improve the company's financial position, the management of U.S. Steel Košice (USSK) announced that by the end of 2021 it will reduce the number of employees working at the plant and its subsidiaries by 2,500.
USSK President James E. Bruno informed of the planned axing of jobs in a statement. The decision comes after careful considerations, he claims.
"We have to act to protect our business and remain competitive," Bruno stated as quoted by the SITA newswire. "We are aware that this decision will impact thousands of families in the region, in association with both direct and indirect jobs. Responsibility for the future of the company tells us to adapt to the arisen situation and guarantee the survival of USSK."
In recent weeks, the closure of several steel operations has been announced.
According to the European steel producer association EUROFER, at stake are 2.6 million jobs directly or indirectly affected by the steel crisis.
"USSK has adopted and continues to take controlled cost-cutting measures. In the second half of June, we announced a reduction in iron and steel production by shutting down one of three blast furnaces," SITA quoted the company's official statement. "Following an agreement with the trade union we have a four-day working week for the second month."
USSK has idled one of its three blast furnaces as of June 20. It did so in response to the current situation on the European steel market which has been massively impacted by steel products imported into the European Union.
Petition to be kicked off
The trade unions in USSK plan to launch a petition on July 22, calling for better conditions in the steel industry. They plan to address PM Peter Pellegrini (Smer) as well.
20. Jul 2019 at 10:12 (modified at 22. Jul 2019 at 14:40) | Compiled by Spectator staff