Emden shipyard workers protest closure plans

Emden shipyard workers protest closure plans
Photo: DPA
Some 2,000 people demonstrated at the traditional northern German seaport of Emden on Friday against the possible closure of its shipyard.

ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems (TKMS), which owns shipyards Blohm & Voss in Hamburg and HDW in Kiel, wants to sell the historical Nordseewerke shipyard.

“We don’t want to allow a more than 100-year-old tradition come to an end out of the short-term considerations of TKMS,” said member of union IG Metall Karl-Heinz Benner.

The company’s board of directors plans to meet on Monday to make the final decision on whether TKMS will sell parts of its shipyard to Siag Schaaf Industrie. Siag would take on between 700 and 1,400 workers to build offshore wind farms.

Meanwhile Emden city officials were scheduled for a crisis meeting on Friday.

Trade unionists have said they will fight the plans.

“If we have to we will close the gates on Monday and Tuesday again if the decision doesn’t turn out the way we want,” IG Metall member Frank Grabbert said.

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