AstraZeneca to Axe 1,400 Jobs in Europe

Will close three plants

Pharmceuticals giant AstraZeneca said on Nov. 20 it would slash 1,400 jobs by 2013 as it shuts factories in Belgium, Spain and Sweden. "AstraZeneca will exit three sites, in Porrino in Spain, Destelbergen in Belgium and Umea in Sweden," the company said.

Jobs will also be affected at facilities in Macclesfield, northwestern England, and Sodertalje in southeastern Sweden.

"These moves will result in a net reduction across the business of 1400 positions by 2013, subject to local consultation," the firm said.

At the same time, the group will invest more cash in its Wuxi plant in China to support continuing growth in the Asia Pacific region.

AstraZeneca executive vice president David Smith said : "These moves are a continuation of AstraZeneca's program to improve the organization's productivity and efficiency. I realize these changes are difficult for our affected employees, with whom we will be consulting in the coming months. We believe these changes are necessary for the long-term strength of the business," Smith added.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2008

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