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Last Updated: Friday, 5 October 2007, 06:01 GMT 07:01 UK
Lights out for GE bulb factories
Incandescent light bulb
There is pressure in some US states to phase out traditional light bulbs
US industrial giant General Electric is closing a number of light bulb manufacturing plants in North America, with the loss of about 1,400 jobs.

Factories will close in the US and Mexico as GE reduces production of traditional incandescent bulbs in favour of less energy intensive ones.

GE said the restructuring was needed because its current production arrangements were "inefficient".

GE has previously cut 3,000 jobs in its consumer division across the world.

'Change'

The latest move will see the closure of all GE's lighting plants in Rio de Janeiro, affecting about 900 jobs.

Some US factories will also shut with the loss of up to 425 jobs.

GE said demand for incandescent light bulbs had dropped sharply in the past five years amid consumer and retail support for more environmentally-friendly models.

Politicians in several states, notably California, have been seeking to phase out the sale of incandescent bulbs.

"It doesn't make sense for us to continue with an inefficient model," said Jim Campbell, president and chief executive of GE Consumer & Industrial.

"We are increasing our focus on the development and production of new, innovative lighting products. We are proposing these actions in order to continue our leadership in an industry that is in the midst of significant change."

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