High dollar lands hard in Thomastown
ABOUT 100 workers in Melbourne's northern suburbs will lose their jobs, after Amcor announced it would would close a factory it runs in Thomastown in July and outsource the work to another manufacturer.
Workers at the Amcor factory make lids for sports drinks, bottles and jars, and seals for beer bottles.
The closure at Thomastown will also mean other job losses at an Amcor factory in Laverton North.
Amcor's Australian managing director, Nigel Garrard, said there would be 80 redundancies at Thomastown and 17 at Laverton North. Mr Garrard blamed significant cost pressures and a high Australian dollar for the move.
The company said in a statement to the Australian Securities Exchange on Monday that closure of the plant would cost an initial $7 million, but would ultimately deliver profits before tax of $5 million.
The Australian Manufacturing Workers Union's assistant secretary, Leigh Diehm, said the factory had supplied beverage seals to customers such as CUB for many years.
"The announcement follows the purchase of CUB by [SABMiller] who has an established Italian supply chain for its can ends," Mr Diehm said. "This was a highly skilled, dedicated . . . site so the announcement is very disappointing."
He said the federal government's manufacturing policy, unveiled on Sunday and designed to protect local jobs by asking companies to consider local alternatives to their global suppliers, was badly needed.