Sandvik Construction moves 160 jobs from England to NI


A Swedish engineering firm is creating 160 jobs in Northern Ireland by transferring manufacturing work from its plant in England.

Sandvik Construction makes crushing and screening equipment that is used in the mining and quarrying industries.

It is reorganising its UK operations, which involves cutting 360 jobs from its plant in Swadlincote, Derbyshire.

The company has said it is moving 160 of those jobs to its production site in Ballygawley, County Tyrone.

Northern Ireland's Enterprise Minister Arlene Foster said the move was a "tremendous endorsement" of the staff and management at the Ballygawley site.

"The fact that the company has chosen Ballygawley as its sole production site is positive news for Northern Ireland and it will allow us to continue to build on our already strong reputation in this sector," she said.

The minister added: "The decision obviously impacts those who are currently employed at the Derbyshire facility and I know the company is currently in discussions with those who will be affected to ensure they have access to a wide range of support measures."

The firm plans to "wind down" its production facilities in Swadlincote with their output finally transferred to Ballygawley by early next year.

Sandvik's managing director, Terry Allison, said "Since the major downturn in 2008/9, the global market for our products has not recovered as fast as we had hoped.

"We are currently running two factories at 50% capacity. This is neither efficient nor sustainable.

"In order to stay competitive, we propose moving all our production onto the Ballygawley site, which is the right size to meet both the current and anticipated demand for our mobile crushers and screeners," he added.

The company is in discussions with the Unite union, which represents many of the workers in Swadlincote.