testata inforMARE

18 August 2022 The on-line newspaper devoted to the world of transports 18:58 GMT+2

July 15, 2022

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Trade unions announce battle against the decision of Wärtsilä to close the historic activity of construction of marine engines in Trieste

Fedriga (FVG Region): unacceptable choice in methods and Ways

The next closure of the historic marine engine construction activities in Trieste since the second post-war period of the last century on the activity of the Grandi Motori Trieste (GMT), born as a joint venture between the group Iri and Fiat, and then passed to the Finnish group Wärtsilä Corporation that since 2000 has placed it under the leadership of Wartsila Italy. The Finnish company has in fact communicated its intention to bring the production of four-stroke engines to Vaasa, Finland, and to cease production in Trieste, provided that it will result in the loss of work for about 450 people.

An announcement that provoked the immediate reaction of the trade unions. Luca Trevisan, national secretary of the Fiom-Cgil, called it a decision "totally unacceptable. Wartsila's choice to close all production in Trieste and relocate it to Finalndia, with the declaration of 451 redundancies out of 973 workers in the plant - underlined - must be sent back to the sender, and proves once again the ineffectiveness of Italian legislation in combating the excessive power of multinationals and prevent relocations Production. It is intolerable that, in the vacuum of politics government industrial, measures to protect work and productive activities, multinationals consider Italy land of conquest, markets and know-how to be acquired, without constraint some in terms of social and employment'. Trevisan has urged government and Friuli Venezia Giulia Region convened immediately an institutional table with the trade unions and the RSU to intervene directly on Wärtsilä and stop the dismissals and the announced destruction of assets industrial.

The Secretary General and the National Secretary of Fim Cisl, Roberto Benaglia and Massimiliano Nobis, spoke of "serious industrial act that - they have highlighted - we denounce and we oppose"." "It is - they recriminated - a treasonous relocation, which the multinational carries out at the shoulders of the union, the workers and the whole community Trieste and the entire national government. Fim Cisl denounces immediately this serious choice that weakens in an unjustified way a important and qualified industrial fabric just as, on the transformation of the mobility of navalmeccanica, yes they can carry out investment projects and great future. We immediately ask the company to account for this serious choice and from today, we ask for the activation of all regional and national tables, for counter this decision and to change the position of the multinational. As Fim Cisl - Benaglia and Nobis recalled - we have in relations with the company for some time asked for an account of the real industrial programs but in the last six months we have seen from part of the multinational an opaque and nebulous attitude that today it leads to a very serious choice built behind the backs of the Italian workers'.

The Uilm also called the decision of the multinational Wärtsilä. "We are speaking - specified Rocco Palombella, secretary general Uilm, and Michele Paliani, Uilm coordinator of the shipbuilding - of a central plant for the group in Italy, where it has four sites where it employs a total of 1,150 people, of which 973 in Trieste, with significant opportunities and prospects productive, also thanks to the proximity to the commercial port. We send back to the sender this wicked act, communicated with a unspeakable mode, that is, a link in video conference of a few minutes. We send back to the sender this action that we will oppose in every forum to safeguard the occupation and future of all Italian sites. Right from the start - announced Palombella and Paliani - we are ready for the mobilization and we ask for the immediate intervention of the Ministry of Economic development and local institutions to start a table of confrontation that avoids an occupational, social and productive that affects hundreds of workers, families and an entire community"."

Announcing the decision to close the business to Trieste, the Finnish group has specified that this will allow annual savings of around 35 million by 2025, while the reorganization of activities will have a cost for the company of about 130 million euros. Reassuring about the maintenance of activities in Italy, the President and Managing Director of Wärtsilä, Håkan Agnevall, explained that "Italy and Trieste will continue to be very important for Wärtsilä in many areas, since we intend to be part of the process of decarbonization of the marine and energy industries'.

"In the difficult circumstances of recent years - he continued Agnevall - our employees in Trieste carried out a commendable work. However, we need to centralize our base production in Europe to further improve our competitive'. Reiterating that Italy and Trieste will continue to be very important for Wärtsilä, Agnevall has specified that "in Trieste our future will be concentrated on research and development activities, sales, projects management, sourcing, services and training. Today in Trieste - ha remembered - a substantial part of our employees is engaged in these activities'.

Not at all satisfied with the company's reassurances, the President of the Friuli Venezia Giulia Region, Massimiliano Fedriga, denounced that "what has been put in place is a behavior and a choice that we consider unacceptable in the methods and in the ways and that leaves us speechless also and above all because for more than a year now not only the Friuli Region Venezia Giulia but also the national government had received ample reassurances both from the top management of the company and also from the Finnish diplomatic and governmental institutions. We ask since immediately - said Fedriga - that the announced relocation with the procedure launched today, as well as not to follow up on the redundancies'.

Referring to the lack of any communication from the company about this decision, the governor of the Region has highlighted that Wärtsilä "even did request for the government's PNRR funds and that, at the beginning of this legislature, had received a contribution from the administration regional for the development of the digital factory'. The company - added Fedriga - "he had several times not only reiterated the desire to maintain production but, even, to implement the development of the Trieste site. In the face of these initial promises and instead given the current unacceptable decision we believe we are dealing with those who tell lies. If we had they been other wills, different from those guaranteed, the company could and should have communicated them in time and appropriate ways, so as to enable the institutions, unions and productive realities, to plan in time and to the better the situation. If Wärtsilä persists in pursue this path and will therefore confirm that until today lied - continued the president of the Region - I hope that the entire Italian production sector closes with it every type of ratio. How can a customer think of this company to have guaranteed relationships with those who lie and do the opposite compared to the commitments made? Faced with such behavior that I think unspeakable and unacceptable, there will now be a unitary and strong response, which will see the system institutional, confindustriale, productive and trade union of Friuli Venezia Giulia move in a compact and decisive way to ensure to employees first of all a protection of work and, above all, a their future. Therefore, on the one hand, we are waiting to see by the company immediately all the procedures that guarantee the workers their legitimate and due protections and, on the other, I hope also the activation of all the consequences provided for by law to follow-up to this unacceptable decision. The Region - concluded Fedriga - for his part, already today, there is; immediately will stand alongside the workers to provide not only all the support but also the path that can guarantee them a certainty of the future".

The statement of the Minister of Development is also very harsh economic: "we are surprised and very irritated - he said Giancarlo Giorgetti - for the unjustified and incorrect decision of Wärtsilä who suddenly announced the closure of the production line in Trieste. I confronted myself this morning with Finnish Minister Ville Skinnari, also unaware of all. I have already ordered the immediate convocation of the summits of the company for explanations of their behavior also in light of the fact that the Finnish company had started just with the MoED a negotiation to close an agreement of innovation».

ADSP Tirreno Centrale
PSA Genova Pra

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