Page last updated at 15:57 GMT, Wednesday, 20 August 2008 16:57 UK

Union fights copper wire closure

Copper wire reels
Draka makes more than 50,000 tonnes of copper wire a year across Europe

Union officials say they will fight plans to close a copper wire factory in Llanelli with the loss of 135 jobs.

Dutch company Draka said last week it would begin a three-month consultation with a view to closing the plant.

The GMB Union has called for more figures to be produced to justify the decision after meeting managers.

It said Draka should consider the possibility of moving to a smaller site in the town or operating with a smaller workforce.

Further talks between managers and union officials will take place next week.

Draka said its facility in the Carmarthenshire town would be "consolidated" with its other European operations.

It plans to transfer the sales arm of its operation in Llanelli to its UK headquarters in Derby.

Bosses blamed high transport costs for the decision, but said they hoped to offer jobs at its other plants to the workforce.

The site at Llanelli produces copper wire for the company's operations across Europe.

But the firm said it was no longer financially viable to import the raw copper rods into the UK, which are then turned into the wire.

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