A total of 170 jobs are on the line at Continental Tyre SA, which is shutting down its underground mining tyres and agricultural tyres production unit in Port Elizabeth and moving production out of SA.
This comes on top of a rash of liquidations – and accompanying job losses – in the Bay since 2017, with an average of three companies a month being forced to apply for liquidation since then.
In what trade union Solidarity described on Tuesday as a crippling blow, Continental issued 170 employees – in both the affected manufacturing unit and its sales organisation – with a Section 189A notice on June 7.
The notice essentially initiates an employee consultative process which could see the company cut 170 jobs.
The closure of the unit was confirmed on Tuesday by the international company’s facility in Port Elizabeth, which said its passenger light truck (PLT) tyre production would continue its operations.
“The decision was made to review the Port Elizabeth manufacturing operations as a result of the restructuring of the global commercial specialty tyre business,” Shaun Uys, the managing director of Continental’s South African operations, said.
“This critical evaluation has resulted in the principal decision to close the underground mining tyres and agricultural tyres production and to relocate this production outside of South Africa.
“An outcome in terms of the affected employees has not yet been made and will be dealt with through the Section 189A consultative process.
“The company will be consulting extensively with all staff and employee representatives.
“The affected employees were informed of the