The spokesperson for the tire manufacturer in Tokyo told franceinfo that the company has studied all the options for the site located in Pas-de-Calais.
Seen from Japan, 10,000 kilometers from Pas-de-Calais, closing the Bridgestone site in Béthune was an obligation. “We had no choice”, this is what Samaro Ijima, the spokesperson at the headquarters of the tire manufacturer in Tokyo, explained to franceinfo on Thursday, September 17. “We have invested heavily in this plant for a long time, he says, but the demand for small caliber tires is falling and to produce larger models there are too many material constraints. You would almost have to build a new factory because the equipment is much larger. “
We looked at all the options, but concluded that it was impossible.to franceinfo
Japanese tire manufacturer Bridgestone announced Thursday, September 16 that it wants to close its Béthune plant in Pas-de-Calais by 2021. More than 850 jobs are in the hot seat.
The president of the Hauts-de-France region Xavier Bertrand has stepped up to the plate. He denounces a betrayal and calls for “a showdown” on franceinfo with the Japanese manufacturer. For its part the government, through the voice of the Minister for Industry Agnès Pannier-Runacher, announced on France Blue North that a meeting could be held on Monday with the group’s European leaders.
Employees were only alerted half an hour before the official announcement Wednesday that the plant was shutting down. “I think there were discussions with the staff representatives upstream, but it is true that we only informed most of the employees that morning”, recognizes the spokesperson.
This announcement schedule was decided by our representation in Europe in agreement with the management on site.to franceinfo
Bridgestone spokesperson assures him: “We intend to do everything to help with the reclassification of staff, to the extent possible.” The reclassification of employees will be difficult in the absence of another factory in France.