The Mechel Targoviste (COS) plant, which recently turned insolvent, will lay off 512 of its approximately 2,000 employees, in the context of reorganising its activity. The employees will receive a 20-day notice and will get three raw salaries as compensatory payments. “Given the economic situation of the company and the firm intention to reorganise its operations, it became necessary to resize the personnel in accordance with the forecast volume of the production, in view of securing the success of implementing the reorganisation plan,” the company explains in a communiqué sent to the Stock Exchange.The minister of Economy, Varujan Vosganian said Friday in a press conference at Bistrita that, if the Ministry of Finance would give a solution regarding the VAT demanded by Mechel, there would be no strike at Campia Turzii. Varujan Vosganian was asked about how he sees the solution to the Mechel case. He answered that he noticed that the new shareholders try to restart the companies of Targoviste and Buzau, but made no promise about Campia Turzii, Galati and Otelul Rosu. Then, the minister said that the steel industry has several problems – which must be solved not only in Bucharest, but also in Brussels – including the cost of electricity, the scrap iron, the tax evasion at the entries of metallurgical products, especially via Bulgaria, the VAT refund and the customs regime of metallurgical products.The former employees of Mechel Campia Turzii are in the second week of protest over not receiving the compensatory salaries. The management of Mechel Campia Turzii proposed to reschedule the payments over a 3-month interval and suggested employees to cut old machines and sell them as scrap iron, with the resulting money to be used for these payments, but the redundant employees were upset by this solution.
Vosganian announced Thursday evening in Suceava that, at the end of March, he will begin talks over the reindustrialisation strategy, which might be concluded in September, with a component dedicated to industrial parks that will attract investors. “There are representatives of industries, representatives of big companies, representatives of banks, chiefs of institutes reporting to the Romanian Academy, representatives of the press and several emblematic figures of the Romanian economy. We hope that we will draft a concrete strategy until September,” Vosganian said.According to the minister, the land was already identified in Suceava, in Iasi too authorities identified a plot of land belonging to Fortus SA, in Brasov a land controlled by Rulmentul, in Bucharest there are works for such a zone and expansions are suggested at Ploiesti and Cluj-Napoca. The minister also said that he talked last week with the ambassador of Ukraine in Bucharest about speeding up a solution to the problem of the Romanian investment in the Krivoi Rog plant.