Benetton is latest multinational to leave Spain

23rd July 2004, Comments 0 comments

23 July 2004, ROME — The Italian clothing group Benetton is planning to close its factory outside Barcelona, it was reported Friday.

23 July 2004

ROME — The Italian clothing group Benetton is planning to close its factory outside Barcelona, it was reported Friday.

The company's management has made no comment on the decision, but Italy's financial press reported that Benetton's decision to transfer production from Spain to Eastern Europe has already been agreed.

The closure of the Castellbisbal factory, which employs about 50 people, is part of the company's plan to shift all but 20 percent of its production to sites outside Italy over the next few years.

Croatia and Hungary are the countries that stand to benefit most from this strategy, but Benetton will also open a small plant in Tunisia, the media reports say.

Two years ago, Benetton shut down its facility in Cervera, also in northeastern Spain. That plant was later purchased by the local company Confecciones Butsenit, a former Benetton supplier.

The Italian textile group currently operates in Spain under the name Benetton Textil Spain, which, in addition to the Castellbisbal factory, also maintains a plant in Maia, Portugal.

It is the latest in a series of multi-nationals to pull out of Spain to reduce labour costs by relocating to Eastern Europe or the Far East.

A report recently said 17,000 people were expected to lose their jobs in Spain within the next two years.

[Copyright EFE with Expatica]

Subject: Spanish news

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