NEC closes Meath plant

22 Feb 2006

Some 350 jobs are to be axed at NEC’s semiconductor plant in Ballivor, Co Meath. It is understood that the company decided to close its Irish manufacturing operation because of high operating costs and is moving its operation to Malaysia and Singapore. Talks are currently underway regarding a redundancy package for the workers.

The NEC plant in Ballivor has been operating for more than 30 years and was long regarded as a jewel in the crown for Ireland’s electronics industry.

It is understood that all of the jobs at the plant will be phased out by September. The operation had been manufacturing semiconductors for the European automotives industry.

Responding to the news, the Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment Micheál Martin TD expressed deep disappointment at the news.

He said: “This news comes as a huge blow to the NEC workers. I am very conscious of the effect that these job losses will have on the workers involved and their families, as well as the community in the surrounding area.

“I wish to assure all concerned that the State agencies will provide every support they can. The priority will be to find alternative employment for those involved.

“This evening I have arranged that FÁS will carry out an immediate assessment of the skills of the workforce and to arrange whatever retraining may be necessary to help those involved find alternative employment,” Minister Martin said.

By John Kennedy