Chemicals Companies Slash Production, Shed Jobs

Arkema will slash production at half of its 80 sites worldwide and DSM will cut about 1,000 jobs

French chemicals company Arkema said on Dec. 15 it will slash production at half of its 80 sites worldwide, after predicting a 15% drop in fourth-quarter revenue.

"Over the end of the year, Arkema is adapting its production to the current level of demand with temporary shutdown or reduction of production at around 40 sites worldwide," the group said.

And the Netherlands-based chemicals company DSM said it would cut about 1,000 jobs as it lowered its 2008 profit forecast by about 100 million euros (US$134 million) in "difficult market conditions."

"DSM is taking a number of structural cost-saving actions to strengthen the profitability and future competitiveness, which are aimed to result in a reduction of DSM's total workforce by about five percent or 1,000 positions," the company said.

Total savings are expected to amount to 100 million euro per year by 2010.

The company said other measures taken to save costs and boost cash flow included temporary plant shutdowns to adjust to reduced consumer demand, reducing temporary contract workers and postponing projects.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2008

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