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 Hamilton SIEMENS - July 2011
 SIEMENS to close as of July 2011
 Ontario for renewable energy plant
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Posted - 03/27/2010 :  00:04:43  Show Profile  Visit Mac's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Siemens looking at Ontario for renewable energy plant.

Hamilton officials will make it a top priority to discuss ways to replace the 550 jobs the city has lost to the United States when they meet with Siemens executives in a few days.

"They have a large wind turbine division. We have highly skilled workers. It's at the top of the list," said Neil Everson, director of economic development for Hamilton.

"We'd like them to stay in the community."

Siemens announced Thursday it will be moving its gas-turbine manufacturing division from its Milton Avenue plant, near Sanford and Barton streets, to Charlotte, N.C., by July 2011.

Brian Maragno, the plant's operations manager, indicated some jobs may be relocated.

At issue is the ability of provincial and federal governments to attract and retain jobs in the critical manufacturing sector as global competition mounts, and in the Siemens case, countries are working to steal those jobs away.

Yesterday Dave Christopherson, MP for Hamilton Centre, raised the point in the House during question period.

"While this government is slashing corporate taxes, corporations are slashing jobs," said Christopherson. "What is this government going to do to keep those jobs in Hamilton?"

Industry Minister Tony Clement responded that he helped open the David Braley cardiac care centre Thursday in Hamilton, which promises 200 new health-care jobs.

Maragno said Siemens' move isn't a reflection of the quality of its workers but a strategic one because most of its customer base is in the United States.

But there were other reasons, millions of them. The state government offered enticements of up to $22.75 million US in tax breaks and grants.

County and city governments promised millions more and a county agency can offer up to $120 million in low-interest loans.

In return, the Munich-based conglomerate plans to invest $135 million and create more than 1,000 new jobs in Charlotte over five years, bringing its employment levels in that city to 1,800.

CAW Local 504, which represents about 325 of the affected workers, and opposition politicians reacted angrily to the news at a press conference yesterday organized by Ontario NDP Leader Andrea Horwath, who is the MPP for Hamilton Centre.

"It's just devastating," said Randy Smith, president of the CAW local. "Siemens owes something to these workers -- I know they only bought it (from Westinghouse) in 1998, but we built this place and we made them billions and billions of dollars over the years.

"And this is what we get for it? We want these jobs and if we can't have these jobs, we want jobs in this plant.

"They've talked about jobs coming into Ontario from Siemens. They better be coming to this plant."

Siemens Canada is exploring the idea of opening a plant to support its renewable energy division somewhere in Ontario, said company spokesperson DL Leslie.

"It's too early to say yet," said Leslie. "Whether it will be in Hamilton, I don't know. I don't want to give any false hope."

Horwath said the provincial government must create policies that link jobs to any government-funded infrastructure or green energy program.

She spoke specifically of the NDP's call for a 50 per cent Buy Ontario policy that would apply to government infrastructure or "green energy" projects.

"We believe quite strongly in all the infrastructure money, the stimulus packages -- a portion of those need to be putting our people back to work."

The provincial government has some initiatives: wind projects must have 25 per cent Ontario content, which will increase to 50 per cent by January 2012. Large solar projects are now set at 50 per cent, increasing to 60 per cent by January 2011, while small solar moves from 40 per cent domestic content to 60 by January 2011.

But David Butters, president of the Association of Power Producers of Ontario, said a 50 per cent Buy Ontario policy is unrealistic because some parts for power plants are not even available domestically.

"The reality is that the taxpayer should have their power plants built with the most cost-effective parts."


23 Posts

Posted - 04/08/2010 :  23:49:23  Show Profile  Visit Mac's Homepage  Reply with Quote
June 1, 2009

Siemens is one of the largest and most diversified companies in the world of electronics and electrical engineering, operating in the industry, energy and healthcare sectors. The company has approximately 6,000 employees in Canada, working to develop and manufacture products, design and install complex systems and projects, and tailor a wide range of solutions for individual requirements. For almost 100 years in Canada, Siemens has stood for technical achievements, innovation, quality and reliability. Sales for Siemens in Canada for fiscal 2008 (ended September 30), were $2.6 billion CAD.

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