Areva begins union talks as company aims to cut $1.1 billion in costs by 2017

Areva is beginning negotiations with labor unions this month as part of a program aimed at cutting costs by more than $1.1 billion.

The negotiations are intended to organize the social dialogue and management of employment and competencies through 2017. The project, which is known as the “Triennial Transition Contract for Human Capital and Economic Safeguard of the Group,” is part of the company’s competitiveness plan announced on March 4.

As part of the project, AREVA said it will reduce its labor costs by approximately 15 percent in France and 18 percent overall worldwide. The company already announced the steps it is taking to reduce overhead and compensation costs to minimize the project’s impact on employment. It hopes that any cuts to its workforce will be voluntary.

Areva CEO Philippe Knoche said the company urgently needs to bring costs in line with market realities.

“I recognize the efforts that are being asked of employees, and this is why I want all decisions to be made in close cooperation with them and their representatives,” Knoche said. “This consultation aims to jointly build the best solutions to maintain our expertise and industrial employment.”

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