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Sunday, December 21, 2008

2,000 jobs to be lost at Dell Raheen - Reports

Decision for thousands of Dell workers expected in January

2,000 jobs are to be cut at the Dell plant in Limerick when the company announces its intention to cut its manufacturing in Ireland in 2009, various media reports suggest.

The Sunday Business Post newspaper published an article today on how Tánaiste Mary Coughlan and Limerick TD and Minister for Defence, Willie O’Dea, flew to the headquarters of Dell in Texas last week in a desperate bid to convince CEO Michael Dell to spare the Raheen plant in its upcoming restructuring.

The paper reports the futile bid failed and its now reported up to 2,000 jobs will go at the plant in early 2009.

The computer giant will transfer the bulk of its manufacturing to Eastern Europe, in particular Lodz in Poland and parts of Asia.

Willie O Dea spoke to Local radio Sunday and stressed that the matter of job losses is ‘still under negotiation’.
“There’s nothing specific about that yet, although it will become clear very shortly id imagine. Sufficed to say my concern is to keep as many jobs as possible here.”
Limericks Labour TD Jan O'Sullivan called on the Mary Coughlan to immediately clarify the future of Dells Irish operations and in particular their facility in Limerick saying,
“The potential loss in job numbers locally will have a devastating effect on the entire economy of the Mid West Region and will result in thousands of workers and their families facing a very uncertain future”
Sinn Féins Limerick Representative Maurice Quinlivan says that job losses in Raheen will clearly be "catastrophic" news for the Mid-West region accusing the Government of being negligent to people here in Limerick for not having a contingency plan to deal with any such closure,
“The closure of manufacturing at Dell will be a major economic disaster for Limerick and having seen the warning signs it is simply not good enough that the government failed to act and are still waiting for this dreadful news to materialise before taking any action”
Limerick Fine Gael TD Kieran O'Donnell says the job loses at Dell would be a "devastating blow" as Dell touches every part of the economy in the Limerick region. He also accused Taoiseach Brian Cowen of incompetence in his refusal to take any personal action to stop the job cuts,
"The Fianna Fáil Government left it too late to get involved. Mary Coughlan and Willie O'Dea's visit would appear to have been pure window-dressing. If the FF Government had been serious about saving Dell jobs, action would have been taken far sooner. That Brian Cowen did not take any personal direct action shows both incompetence and a complete lack of understanding of the magnitude of the situation. As we have seen with the economy and the banks, there is no leadership coming from the Taoiseach's Office and instead all we get is procrastination."
However government and company sources are reported as saying that a 'transfer announcement' will be made in early January, despite everyones pleas.

When taking into account the number of distribution companies besed in Raheen and in the Mid West that work in conjunction with Dell and rely on Dell, the number of job losses would be significantly and catastrophically higher.

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