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(ECO) GODIVA HALTS PRODUCTION IN BELGIUM DUE TO WORKER PROTESTS.

BRUSSELS, Apr 8, 2010 (TUR) -- Premium chocolate producer Godiva halted production in Belgium on Wednesday due to protests of workers, a company statement said.

Godiva management said safety of workers could not be taken under guarantee and production could not be maintained due to violent protests of workers, supported by union representatives.

The company management accused the union representatives of violating an agreement they signed on March 10 to continue production and ensure security in the factory.

Nicolas Bouve, the CEO of Godiva Europe, said they had no other alternative than suspending production in the Brussels factory due to increasing violent protests of workers.

"We will not resume production unless workers assure us to fulfil all their obligations under their contracts, particulary security rules," Bouve said.

However, representatives of unions rejected the accusations of the Godiva management, and argued that the management, which had decided to dismiss 90 workers of the Brussels factory last month, did not establish any dialogue with them.

On March 2, Godiva said the hand package unit, which was not productive, would be closed and this business would be transferred to another company, which would affect 90 workers.

The Godiva factory in Brussels Kekolberg employ 360 people.

Workers protested the decision, and went on a strike on March 16.

Turkey's Yildiz Holding, the owner of Ulker brand, purchased Godiva in return for 850 million USD in 2007.

(BRC-MS)

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Publication:Anadolu (Eskisehir, Turkey)
Date:Apr 8, 2010
Words:235
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