20/02/2004

Car components factory to shut with loss of 550 jobs

A car components factory in east Belfast has announced it is to close with the loss of 550 jobs.

Staff at the Dundonald plant of Japanese owned TK-ECC, formerly known as Fisher Body, were informed of the shock decision by management when they turned up for work at 9am on Friday morning.

While trade union representatives will meet with factory managers on Monday to discuss the situation, it is understood that all the jobs at the firm will go in the next few weeks.

The decision comes just a year after the company announced it was laying off 300 workers at the plant.

The plant, which at one time was one of the biggest employers in east Belfast with a workforce of more than 800, makes seatbelts for a range of car manufacturers, including Toyota, Honda and Vauxhall.

However, a downturn in the motor industry has been blamed for today's decision.

(MB)

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