Siemens hopes workers could be re-deployed or re-skilled
More than 200 jobs are under threat at a metals subsidiary of German industrial giant Siemens, in Dorset.
The 240 workers, based at the Siemens VAI head office in Christchurch, were told the news earlier.
The company is involved in the design and engineering of steel products and has started a "strategic review".
Siemens blamed the move on "challenging economic conditions" but said it hopes to re-deploy and re-skill staff to reduce redundancies.
In a statement, the firm said: "Siemens has today confirmed that it is undertaking a strategic review of its metals and minings business in line with challenging economic conditions and significant decreased demand in this sector of industry worldwide.
"As part of this review, the outcomes of which are expected to be implemented by the end of 2010, the company has announced that it is considering the future of its operation in Christchurch."
A consultation has begun with affected staff.