Arrow Pharm laying off 110 workers
Actavis Malta today announced a restructuring of operations at its Arrow Pharm facility in Hal Far, Malta, and approximately 110 employees are at risk of redundancy.
Following the acquisition of Actavis by Watson Pharmaceuticals (now Actavis plc) in 2012, the company has been addressing over capacity and overlaps in its global operations. The announcement of the intention to restructure is part of the continued integration of the two global companies. The restructuring is due primarily to a 50 per cent reduction in packaging volumes at the facility, as well as a drive to make the Hal Far site more cost competitive in the face of aggressive global competition within the industry.
The company is eager to minimise the number of employees impacted, through the possible inclusion of a number of Hal Far employees within any potential alternative vacant positions within the company. Additionally, the company will support its employees with a comprehensive transition plan during this process.
Actavis operates two manufacturing facilities in Malta, in Bulebel and Hal Far, as well as a Commercial Sales unit for Malta and Africa. The company employs around 850 people on the island.
The Maltese Government is working incessantly to provide alternative jobs for those employees of Arrow Pharm whose jobs are at risk, Minister Chris Cardona said this morning.
In his first reaction to the decision communicated by the company Arrow Pharm, the Minister for the Economy, Investment and Small Business Dr. Chris Cardona stated that the main message he wants to send out is to the employees whose jobs are at risk. “This Government will not abandon you and is committed to finding you an alternative job, either in one of the companies already established in Malta or in one of the companies which shall be investing in Malta in the near future," said Dr Cardona.
The economic policy of this government is already giving positive signals and generating new jobs. Statistics already show that in the past 10 months an average of 19 jobs per day have been created. In addition to this, until the end of 2013, Malta Enterprise approved 80 new projects, 35 of which are based on Foreign Direct Investment.
In the case of Arrow Pharm, Minister Cardona said that the Government tried all possible routes to keep the company from taking this direction, but unfortunately he was informed that this decision goes back to November 2012, when Watson Pharmaceuticals took over Actavis.
Dr. Chris Cardona also said that this is an issue of competitiveness, caused mainly by the burden of energy costs which has affected negatively the competitiveness of the operation.
“This situation sheds light on the sorry state in which competitiveness was left under the previous administration. This is also a sign of the importance of the government’s commitment to reduce the cost of energy for the industry as from next year, as well as the importance of refraining from shocking the industry as used to be done in the past” Minister Cardona concluded.