The Japanese group Ibiden has announced the closure of its particle filter manufacturing site in Courtenay (Loiret), which employs 320 permanent employees and around 100 temporary workers. The group invokes the rapid decline of diesel engines as a reason for the closure.
By the end of 2016, the plant had almost closed to be relocated to Hungary, where the Japanese group's other industrial unit is being deployed in Europe. Thanks to their mobilisation, the employees obtained the freezing of this plan until 2020 and requested investments, estimated at €50 million, to modernise the production lines. The proposals was not successful because at that time the Hungarian site was already producing new generation filters, and has not stopped developing since. It now employs 2,850 people and will probably take over the activities of the French plant. At the same time, the French site continued its decline by accumulating deficits. The only uncertainty remains its closing date, which has not been specified.
A meeting was held at the Ministry of Finance at the end of November with representatives of the management, employees and the authorities concerned in order to help in the search for a buyer and to save as many jobs as possible. The group should present a social plan within a few months.