Expatica news

Up to 2,200 water, public works jobs to be axed

12 January 2004

AMSTERDAM — Cost-cutting and restructuring measures at the Department of Public Works and Water Management will possibly see between 1,800 and 2,200 jobs disappear between 2004 and 2008.

The department currently has 11,000 workers involved in road and water projects across the country, but the Cabinet — which is slashing EUR 17 billion from the national budget between now and 2007 — has requested that it cut 1,000 jobs.

But director-general Bert Keijts also said he wants to reorganise the department in a shake-up that could cost additional jobs. He hopes to make the department more customer-oriented and more business like.

Despite the fact that the Works Council has demanded that no forced redundancies take place, the department chief has admitted that such a guarantee is impossible, news agency ANP reported.

The job losses will occur via natural attrition as much as possible. The retirement of workers aged 60 or more will therefore be accelerated and a hiring freeze will be placed on the department, based in The Hague.

The department, known in Dutch as the Rijkswaterstaat, was established in 1798 and is part of the Transport and Public Works Ministry. From 2006 it will become a type of agency and job losses will be spread across its regional offices and specialist services.

[Copyright Expatica News 2004]

Subject: Dutch news