Industrial action at Tata Steel Netherlands’ (TSN) Ijmuiden plant could commence as early as June 10 if Tata Steel Europe does not meet union demands, according to an interview given by FNV union spokesperson Roel Berghuis on June 4.

 

Around 1,000-2,000 unionized workers voted unanimously in favour of industrial action at a drive-in member’s meeting; with the use of green flags to indicate approval.

 

TSN employees have been disgruntled since the sudden departure of Theo Henrar, chief executive officer of TSN, last month, who was viewed as an ally in their battle against Tata Steel Europe’s plans to lay-off approximately 1,600 jobs at the Ijmuiden plant.

 

Tata Steel Europe released a statement earlier in the week stressing that there will be no changes in the “status of the structure and agreements that have already been made” with unions, guaranteeing no job losses until October 2021 (Employment Pact).

 

The reiteration of previous guarantees by the parent company has failed to placate the FNV metal union and its members, who have tabled 11 fresh demands requiring that the company provides written commitments and guarantees that:

 

  • – There are no compulsory redundancies at Tata Steel Netherlands (TSN).
  • – All parts of the transformation program that includes job losses within TSN will be withdrawn and not be executed.
  • – No social plan in place of or in addition to the employment pact. 
  • – Extension of the employment pact by five years until October 2026 and an extension of the Generation Pact by four years until December 31, 2026.
  • – No parts belonging to TSN in the Netherlands, including Tata Steel Tubes Netherlands, will be sold.
  • – No work will be outsourced, including Business Process Outsourcing.
  • – Tata Steel will maintain the current corporate structure, including:
  • – No integration of TSN and Tata Steel United Kingdom 
  • – The integrated steel company in IJmuiden, including all necessary support functions, will be maintained as an independent unit.
  • – Within a possibly larger group or if there may be an independent company after the disentanglement of Tata Steel Europe.
  • – A strategic plan for the future of TSN that should be ready by 2020 discussing how TSN will invest in the installations and employees to be ready for the future and how the environmental and CO2 problems are tackled.
  • – The FNV requires adequate explanation and justification regarding the announced departure of the Henrar.
  • – The FNV requires to be consulted in advance when appointing new members of TSN’s management.

 

TSN operates a facility in Ijmuiden with liquid steelmaking capacity of 7.3mn mt per annum and can produce slab, hot and cold rolled coil, and coated strip products (galvanized coil and packaging steels); employing 9,00 people.

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