The decision by high end manufacturing firm Flotech to cease production in New Zealand shows the urgent need for a government jobs strategy, says the Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union.
The closure, which will result in more than 70 redundancies at Flotech’s Manukau plant, follows similar mass redundancies at Summit Wool Spinners in Oamaru and Norman Ellison Carpets in Onehunga.
EPMU assistant director of organising Strachan Crang says the government needs to support manufacturing if it’s serious about protecting well paid, highly skilled jobs.
“This is the third major factory closure in as many weeks. It’s time the government realised that its hands-off approach isn’t working.
“Our members are already telling us they’re looking overseas because they know they’re going to struggle to find similar work in New Zealand.
“It’s a sad fact that a lot of Kiwis are starting to see their future in Australia because there simply aren’t enough skilled, highly paid jobs to keep people here.
“Unless the government is willing to step up with a plan to help manufacturing firms through the downturn we’re just going to see more good jobs like these disappear.”
All EPMU members affected by the job losses will receive a redundancy package as part of their collective agreement.