France's Carrefour to cut 1,672 jobs and close stores in Belgium

The French retailer, Carrefour, confirmed on Tuesday plans to cut 1,672 jobs in Belgium, and close 21 stores across the country. Salaries for all remaining staff will be frozen.


AFP - The world's second largest retailer, Carrefour, on Tuesday announced plans to slash 1,672 jobs in Belgium, a second restructuring in three years for the French giant.

The company also confirmed in a statement its intention to freeze salaries for the remaining staff.

"No solution can permit us to consider continuing operating 14 hypermarkers and seven supermarkets which are structurally loss-makers," it said.

Union official Myriam Delmee told AFP that the company's works council was informed of the cuts -- out of a total Belgian workforce of 15,000 -- and of the closure of 21 stores, which will be taken on by Belgium's Mestdagh.

In 2007 a restructuring exercise across Belgium, a country of some 10 million people, saw 900 jobs lost and 16 stores close.

Carrefour, number two behind US retail giant Wal-Mart, said earlier this month it plans to enter India's vast retail market in 2010 following years of delays.

The retailer reported separately that net profit tumbled in 2009 by 74.2 percent to 327 million euros (505 million dollars), hit by huge restructuring charges.

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