Agricultural machinery manufacturer MTD Hungária Gépgyártó és Kereskedelmi has decided to stop production at its Nemesvámos unit. The plant produces lawnmowers and other types of garden machinery. As a result, 465 employees will be laid off. The plant will stop producing on 7 August. To maintain operation in areas like administration, logistics and sales, the company will keep a staff of 55.
As a part of a global rearrangement of company production, several product lines of the company – battery-powered tools, robotised lawnmowers, lawnmower tractors – will be concentrated at the firm’s US and Israel units. The company press release does not mention the coronavirus crisis as a reason behind the closure – it only cites changing European market trends. But as recently as in March the firm was looking for new machine operators, which suggests that to closure may have been an abrupt decision, most likely a response to the virus crisis.
While the MTD plant does not have a trade union, a union representative at a nearby plant says that – according to information received – MTD workers are required to ramp-up the work effort until 7 August, to accelerate production. The laid-off employees will get termination payment, but it is unclear whether this applies to the whole workforce since many workers are employed as agency workers or under fixed-term contracts.bAccording to the same union representative, the actual job loss might be bigger than the 465 cited above, since the plant seasonally hired many additional workers on a temporary basis, sometimes raising the overall workforce above 1000, mostly during the spring and autumn months.
MTD is one of the most important employers in Nemesvámos.