Crystalex Novy Bor: production stops as money runs out

Czech glass maker Crystalex Novy Bor is having to completely stop production due to a lack of money, and its 1,730 employees will not be paid for December 2008, company spokesman Karel Samec said 5 Ja…

Czech glass maker Crystalex Novy Bor is having to completely stop production due to a lack of money, and its 1,730 employees will not be paid for December 2008, company spokesman Karel Samec said 5 January 2009. The company, a member of glass group Bohemia Crystalex Trading (BCT), has asked the state for help. It was protected by a moratorium which expired on 31 December 2008. Banks then seized all the funds from its account leaving nothing to finance production and pay staff, he said. The problems of Crystalex and parent BCT will also affect glass maker Sklarny Kavalier which is still producing and has money in its accounts. “Sklarny Kavalier, however, has lost part of revenues from BCT whose money has been drawn by banks and so has to pay December wages in instalments,” Mr. Samec explained. Crystalex management is trying to keep key production going. It wants to secure operating finance through the Finance Ministry which would allow it to produce until the company is sold to a new owner, Mr. Samec said. Crystalex production was limited beginning 20 December 2008 due to lower demand in Russia. Only two automatic lines were still in operation and others were to start running again on 5 January 2009. “Emptying the remaining three glass furnaces and the two lines that depend on them will begin on Tuesday and then production will stop completely,” Mr. Samec said, adding that only maintenance personnel will remain on duty. The other employees will stay at home on 60% pay. Crystalex also has operations in Karolinka in the Vsetin area and in Vrbno pod Pradedem, both in northern Moravia. They were to resume production on 19 January 2009 but this will not now happen.