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F&P Appliances Goes to 35-Hour Week to Save Jobs
Mar 25, 2009
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Fisher & Paykel Appliances agreed to a temporary 35-hour working week at an Auckland, New Zealand plant to save jobs in the downturn. The company will be one of the first to join the New Zealand government’s nine-day working fortnight plan, gaining a state subsidy to help make up the difference to a 40-hour week.

"This situation has come about by the recent decline of global demand, combined with entering our traditional off-peak manufacturing winter season," chief executive John Bongard said. The arrangements mean "we are able to retain the current staffing levels and avoid immediate redundancies."

About 60 jobs at the Auckland refrigeration assembly plant will be saved as a result of the arrangements, Bongard said. Under the arrangement, the company and the government will make equal contributions to an additional 3.5 hours a week of pay. The remaining 1.5 hours, bringing the total to 40, may be taken as paid leave, F&P Appliance said. Workers will also receive 3.5 hours of in-house training to up their skills.

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