Tata Steel to cut up to 3,000 jobs in Europe

The Hague (AFP) –


Indian group Tata Steel said Monday it would slash up to 3,000 jobs in Europe as it restructures European operations following the collapse of a planned merger.

The announcement came after weeks of speculation that the steel giant, which employs 11,000 workers in the Netherlands, would cut thousands of jobs to tackle structural challenges and weaker demand for European steel that is compounded by the US-China trade conflict.

The group employed around 20,000 workers across the continent.

One way to improve the group's finances was to cut employment costs, which meant "an estimated reduction in employee numbers of up to 3,000 across Tata Steel's Europe operations," the group's European unit said in a statement.

About two-thirds of the cuts would likely affect administrative posts, Tata said.

"Stagnant EU steel demand and global overcapacity have been compounded by trade conflicts which have turned the European market into a dumping ground for the world's excess steel capacity," Tata said.

"Together with a significant increase in the cost of emission allowances, this has created an urgent need for improvements to the company's financial performance," it said.

Tata's announcement follows the collapse in May of a mooted merger with the German industrial conglomerate Thyssenkrupp aimed at dealing with a surge in Chinese-made steel.

The two groups called off talks however after the EU made clear that it would not allow the merger on competition grounds.

Thyssenkrupp then announced plans to slash 6,000 jobs, mainly in Germany, and filed a complaint at an EU court against the European Commission for blocking the merger plan.