Daewoo Seeks Asian Workers for Shipyard in Romania

Lack of local labor and Asian wages are 20%-30% lower than Romanian wages

A shipyard in Romania owned by South Korean conglomerate Daewoo plans to employ about 300 workers from Asia before the end of the year to overcome a labor shortage, the company said March 24. "We have two reasons for taking on foreign citizens," the head of human resources for the company, Gemal Memetcea, said. "Firstly because of a lack of labor locally and after a number of qualified workers emigrated in the last few years, and secondly because of the cost of taking on Asians, which are 20% to 30% lower than Romanians."

He said 57 Vietnamese workers and 48 Chinese employees have already started at the shipyard in Mangalia, on Romania's Black Sea coast. Eleven more Vietnamese are expected next week and another 125 are in the process of applying for visas and work permits.

The process of bring 20 Sri Lankans to Romania has already begun and another 50 from the South Asian island country are to follow before the end of the year, he added.

The shipyard employs 3,600 people with the gross monthly salary on average about 700 euros ($1,000).

Romania -- an EU member state since January last year -- is suffering from a serious shortage of workers for the construction and textile industries and plans to turn to foreign labor to plug the gaps.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2008

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