Production at Dundee’s Michelin factory will not restart when the Covid-19 restrictions are lifted, the company has confirmed.
The tyre factory, which first opened in 1972, announced in 2018 that it would officially close its doors in June this year.
Poor projected production levels were blamed in part on cheaper tyres coming in from Asia and falling demand for premium tyres in smaller dimensions.
Michelin had initially planned to restart production after April 13 and carry on until the plant’s closure, however the company has concluded that it would be “unviable and unwise” amid the “growing challenges” caused by the coronavirus outbreak.
The decision was taken in agreement with the Unite union and all employees will continue to be paid at their normal rate until the end of June.
In line with previous commitments, there will be intensive job search and wellbeing support available to all employees – although most of this will now be online to reduce risk.
Factory manager John Reid said employees would be mobilised to volunteer for projects set up by the community, government and health services to support people during the Covid-19 crisis.
He added: “Our priority remains the safety of our workforce. This is an unexpected end to tyre production at our factory, but we believe this is the best decision for our employees and their families.
“We will be developing a new employability programme to help people find their next positive destination, be that retirement, further education or a new job.
“We’re also conscious that some people will find being confined to their homes tough, so wellbeing support will continue to be important.
“We will be using technology and social media combined with a limited presence on site until the virus allows more normal working.
“We would like to take this opportunity to thank our team in Dundee for their support and hard work during what has been a very challenging time.”