Bigger risk of Finnish job cuts in Nokia-Alcatel deal: minister

17th April 2015, Comments 0 comments

Finnish Finance Minister Antti Rinne said Friday that Finnish telecom equipment maker Nokia's takeover of rival Alcatel-Lucent will put more jobs at risk in Finland than in France.

Rinne told the online edition of Finland's Swedish-language daily Hufvudstadsbladet that he shared concerns expressed by the Finnish engineers' union, since it was easier to let go of staff in Finland than in France.

"There is a bigger risk in Finland that people will lose their jobs," he said.

Rinne's comments came amid last-minute campaigning for Finland's legislative elections on Sunday.

Polls suggest voters plan to oust the current left-right government for failing to pull the country out of a three-year economic slump.

"In Finland it's cheaper to let people go," Rinne explained.

According to the Finnish engineers' union, firing a French middle-management employee with 15 years experience and a monthly net salary of 3,000 euros ($3,225) costs around 50,000 euros.

In Finland, the amount is significantly lower, or even zero if the employee works until the end of his or her notice period.

At a press conference at Nokia's headquarters on Friday, chief executive Rajeev Suri reiterated his hope that jobs will be preserved in the long-term in Finland and France following the buyout.

Earlier this week, Nokia announced a 15.6-billion-euro ($16.6 billion) bid to buy Alcatel-Lucent.

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© 2015 AFP

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