The Hutchinson group, which manufactures and markets products derived from rubber processing, has announced the loss of 3,000 jobs worldwide, including between 800 and 1,000 in France. The company's main customers include the automotive and aerospace industries, both of which have been hard hit by the COVID-19 containment measures that shut down the world for two months.
In France, the group, which is a subsidiary of the oil giant Total, is planning a voluntary redundancy plan for 800 to 1,000 employees, out of a workforce of 8,000 spread over its 25 French sites. This restructuring is motivated by the current situation in the automotive industry. The management hopes that this plan will be carried out without dismissals. Management has already identified nearly 800 people who are eligible for early retirement at the national level. The company wants to open negotiations immediately, so that the plan can take effect in September and end in January 2021.
In France, the trade unions point out the perverse effects of Total's decision not to use the short-time working scheme, while assuming 100% of salary payments, which has left a significant cash shortfall, explains the CFDT. The CGT stresses that the Total group chose not to make use of this arrangement in order to be able to pay dividends freely to its shareholders.
Worldwide, the group employs around 40,000 people.