Newhouse firm Terex Trucks is set to lose more jobs next month as it blames the global mining and quarrying sectors remaining heavily depressed.
Terex let go 50 workers in December and has now initiated a redundancy programme that could affect approximately 44 employees.
A Terex spokesperson said: “The lack of demand in core mining and quarrying markets continues to affect the company’s order intake situation.
“This is driven largely by the severe economic position in China that is affecting key markets in Asia and Africa, and the geopolitical situation in Russia which is having a seriously negative effect on the market there.
“The global impact on commodity mining is extremely serious with the knock on effect being Terex Trucks seeing very low levels of activity, worse than the 2008 global economic recession.
“Whilst the business makes every effort to drive new orders into the factory the uncontrollable factors mentioned above have forced Terex Trucks to initiate a redundancy programme.
“This is part of a series of cost cutting measures being implemented across the facility, including a recruitment freeze and a ban on overtime.
“The company will now embark on a meaningful consultation process with the Trade Unions to ensure this process is conducted in an appropriate manner and with respect to those team members affected.”
In the last two months Terex Trucks has signed two deals with Leadway Heavy Machinery (LHM) to supply a total of 19 TR100 rigid haulers to be used for jade mining in Myanmar.
This alone though hasn’t been enough to stave off the immediate problems at the factory.
Director and general manager Paul Douglas said: “The current business environment is extremely disappointing, but we remain optimistic that in the medium term the situation will improve.
“With these actions, we aim to move quickly to adjust capacity to current market situation, and are acting to minimise job losses in the longer term.
“The core capability of the business will be preserved, and we will be in a stronger position to respond when the order situation changes.”
The trade union Unite has raised its fears over the future of Terex at Newhouse with the latest round of cuts likely to see the workforce almost halved from its 2009/10 peak of 630 employees.
The future was considered secure following a buyout by Volvo Construction Equipment in 2013, worth a reported $160 million, but Unite regional officer Debbie Hutchings believes manufacturing jobs are now going abroad.
She said: “These latest cuts are another hammer blow to the workforce and the local community, not to mention the wider Scottish manufacturing sector.
“Our members have worked with the company over the last five years to sustain livelihoods through tough economic times and often at great personal sacrifice, undertaking short-term working and wage restraint.
“However, instead of security they’ve been repaid with redundancy with the company increasingly focussing its manufacturing interests in both Poland and India.
“We are well aware of the challenges facing the firm’s global markets, specifically in mining, but we now need answers over whether the employer sees a long-term future for manufacturing in Newhouse.”
Unite have been working with Uddingston and Bellshill MSP Michael McMahon, himself a former Terex worker, and seeking Scottish Government intervention.
Mr McMahon says more has to be done to allow Scottish firms to be involved in major Scottish projects.
He said: “Terex have stock built, but no new orders, and while they are confident the situation will improve it is how they carry on to get to that point and I am asking for Government support.
“Things have to change to allow Scottish firms to get a sniff of public contracts as the way things are at the monent they haven’t a chance.
“When the Scottish Procurement Bill came up in Parliament we tried to put in an amendment that a certain percentage of the work had to go to firms at home, but this was voted against by the Scottish Government.
“As a result you have a situation here very similar to that of Tata Steel who don’t have an interest in the Forth Road Bridge project, and similarly we have these M8/M74 projects without a single Terex truck on site.
“Unite are right to be concerned about jobs going abroad, but it isn’t just that. We have plenty of work going on here, but the money for them is going abroad and that has to change.”