Alro Slatina’s Labor Force Rallies Against Aluminium Production Capacity Closure

Alro Slatina’s Labor Force Rallies Against Aluminium Production Capacity Closure

The labor force at Romania’s Alro Slatina aluminium smelter rallied yesterday to protest against the plant’s management and their decision to operate at less than half capacity in the face of high energy prices. 

Representatives from the plant’s trade unions told local media that the high energy prices are the result of vested interests and will eventually affect the entirety of Romania’s market. They went on to say that the site’s 1,500-strong labor force would likely end up unemployed as a result of the curtailment of production to 40 percent of capacity. 

“Employees of ALRO SA and employees of other companies that are directly or indirectly affected by the reduction of production capacity of ALRO SA by closing 60% of capacity and sending over 1500 employees to technical unemployment will participate,” union representatives said of the protests yesterday. 

Alro’s management opted to shutter three of its five aluminium production lines for the entirety of 2022 late last year. Management gave its word to the labor force that layoffs would not occur, but that promise has been strongly questioned by trade unions at the site.  

“The mafia created around electricity and gas resources does not stop its speculative actions, thus irreversibly destroying the Romanian industry,” opined the plant’s union representatives. “We inform you that not only we are in the same disastrous situation, but the whole industry in Romania is in a deep coma in which it struggles relentlessly from the clutches of electricity and gas speculators. Hundreds of thousands of employees will lose their jobs due to a maximum of 50 ‘tricksters’ who believe they are the masters of Romanian electricity and gas.” 

Union leaders went on to say that they have yet to hear from several government agencies about the closure despite repeated requests.