Siemens Gamesa has reported the closure of its As Somozas (Galicia) and Cuenca (Castilla-La Mancha), thus initiating a collective dismissal procedure that will affect a maximum of 266 employees of both factories, as reported by the company. Specifically, they will be involved a maximum of 51 workers at the Cuenca plant from the wind turbine manufacturer and others 215 employees of the factory in Galicia.
The company, controlled by the German multinational Siemens, has framed this decision in the initiatives it has launched «To improve competitiveness, mainly in the ‘onshore’ business, and to be profitable in a sustainable way ”.
The impact of the Covid-19 crisis led Siemens Gamesa to register some historical losses of 918 million euros in its fiscal year 2020 (October to September).
The group noted that the closure of the Somozas factory is due to the lack of orders of the blades of the ‘SG 2.X-114’ turbine model produced by the plant and the impossibility of competitively manufacturing the largest models demanded by the market. Specifically, the company has indicated that You have no confirmed order for this blade model in Spain in 2021 and there is no forecast that there will be any project with the ‘SG 2.X-114’ turbine in the future, as there is no demand for this model in Spain.
In this regard, it has considered that the Spanish market, like the global market in general, demands larger turbines than the Somozas plant “It cannot produce competitively because its costs are higher than those of other factories», And that Siemens Gamesa’s longest turbines, which will be in significant demand in the coming years, would be impossible to manufacture at the Galician plant due to space and transportation limitations.
Regarding the Cuenca plant, whose activity is exclusively focused on the repair of blades, he estimated that “It is not sustainable in a very competitive market and with a growing tendency to replace blades instead of repair” and “it is not viable in the long term” because it could not repair larger turbines than the ones it now repairs due to space problems.
ERE of 266 people
The wind turbine manufacturer, born in 2017 from the merger of the Spanish Gamesa with the Siemens wind power division, indicated that it will use all the means at its disposal to minimize as much as possible the impact of this decision, for which an Employment Regulation File (ERE) will be launched shortly for this maximum of 266 people, starting negotiations with the workers’ representatives in the coming days, in accordance with current regulations.
Last year, the group already proceeded to closure of the Aoiz blade factory in Navarra (Navarra), with the dismissal of more than 200 employees of the factory.
The CEO of Siemens Gamesa’s ‘Onshore’ (onshore wind), Lars Bondo Krosgsgaard, has indicated that the closures of As Somozas and Cuenca are “tough measures, but necessary to redirect the company’s situation and guarantee its sustainability and the employment of the more than 24,000 Siemens Gamesa employees, some 4,400 of them in Spain ”.
For their part, the governments of Spain, Galicia and Castilla-La Mancha regretted and have expressed “His rejection” of the announcement by Siemens Gamesa to close its plants “at a time of expansion of the sector in Spain.” In a joint statement, the three administrations have also expressed “total solidarity with the plant workers and their families in the face of these announcements and their full commitment to seek solutions.”