Unions demand more information on Poland's planned ZAP, ZAT merger

03 October 2012 16:14  [Source: ICIS news]

LONDON (ICIS)--Zaklady Azotowe Pulawy’s (ZAP’s) workforce remains far from convinced that the planned merger of the company with fellow Polish fertilizer producer Zaklady Azoty Tarnow (ZAT) will not bring substantial job cuts and worse employment conditions, a group of union representatives said on Wednesday.

The Defence Committee for ZAP said treasury minister Mikolaj Budzanowski cannot expect support for the merger from the ZAP unions unless he gives reassurances to the 3,500-strong workforce in a face-to-face meeting and provides more information on the transaction.

“If precise information about what the combination of the companies will mean for workers is not made available, we may organise protests,” a spokesman for the group said.

Many ZAP workers are anxious that ZAP will go from being a local company that is attentive to local issues and social needs to a “Polish corporate” that has little to do with the localities in which it operates, he added.

The treasury ministry said it is in touch with the unions and is giving details on why the merger of the two state-controlled companies is in the interests of all involved parties.

Together, ZAP and ZAT should make up Europe's second largest fertilizer producer, according to the ministry.

Apart from fertilizers, the ZAT group also produces caprolactam (capro), polyamide 6 (or nylon 6) and plasticizers. As well as nitrogen fertilizers, ZAP is also a producer of capro and melamine.

The ministry's roadmap for the merger sees the company's boards deciding by 30 October on how the new firm, to be named Grupa Azoty, would handle corporate governance issues and ongoing investment projects.

By: Will Conroy
+44 20 8652 3214

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