Viridian blames job cuts on cheap glass imports from China

Thirty-seven workers at CSR Viridian“s glass facility in the Melbourne suburb of Clayton have been made redundant, representing about 10% of the plant“s workforce.
Unions have blamed these new job …

Thirty-seven workers at CSR Viridian“s glass facility in the Melbourne suburb of Clayton have been made redundant, representing about 10% of the plant“s workforce. Unions have blamed these new job cuts in the glass industry on Australia“s “weak” anti-dumping regime, and have threatened industrial action against builders directly importing cheap glass from China. According to Leo Skourdoumbis, assistant national secretary of the union“s forestry and furnishing products division, Chinese companies are distributing glass into Australia “way below market rates”. “The managers are saying a big reason for the redundancies is that the unfair competition coming out of China means their business has been affected,” he said. However, Martin Cole, a spokesman of Virdian, said the jobs cuts were primarily driven by other factors. “The decision to make redundancies at the Clayton facility primarily reflects the ongoing weak conditions in commercial construction, but also operational efficiencies which have been made at the site,” he said. “In relation to anti-dumping, Viridian“s upstream manufacturing business made an anti-dumping case in relation to clear float glass.” “In November last year, Customs issued their statement of essential facts which found that dumping had occurred and material injury had occurred, suppressing prices and profits. “However, Customs has since advised that the case was terminated (after) they concluded that dumping had occurred but they could not determine material injury.” Viridian has subsequently appealed the case to the Trade Measures Review Officer. Blue-collar unions have requested the federal government to protect Australian companies from cheap imports dumped on local markets.