French shoemakers march to defend themselves

2nd September 2005, Comments 0 comments

ROMANS-SUR-ISERE, France, Sept 2 (AFP) - Hundreds of French shoemakers on Friday marched through the southeastern town of Romans-sur-Isère -- capital of the country's luxury shoe industry -- to protest against two recent closure announcements that threaten large-scale job losses.

ROMANS-SUR-ISERE, France, Sept 2 (AFP) - Hundreds of French shoemakers on Friday marched through the southeastern town of Romans-sur-Isère -- capital of the country's luxury shoe industry -- to protest against two recent closure announcements that threaten large-scale job losses.

Protesters built a pile of shoes on the town's mediaeval bridge. "It is to show that you cannot get rid of workers the way you do an old pair of shoes," said trade union representative Gilles Apoix.

Last month the design house Charles Jourdan was placed in receivership after directors filed for bankruptcy protection. Another luxury shoemaker Stephane Kelian also announced it is to close. Overall more than 550 jobs are under threat.

The difficulties facing the French shoe industry are blamed on growing competition from cheap Chinese imports.

Copyright AFP

Subject: French news, shoes, Charles Jourdan, Romans-sur-Isère

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