25 Oct 2009

Australian minister questions Bridgestone cut timing

10:48 am on 25 October 2009

An Australian government minister has hit out at Bridgestone's sudden decision to axe 600 Australian jobs.

The tyre-maker announced on Friday it was closing its Christchurch plant by Christmas putting 275 people out of work.

At the same time, Bridgestone Australia said it would shut its Adelaide plant in April next year.

Bridgestone maintains the decision was made on Friday, but Federal Industry Minister Kim Carr believes the company would have decided earlier.

"These decisions take time and it is apparent to me, given the experience of so many other companies, this was not a matter that was first considered on Friday." he told the ABC.

Both the Federal and South Australian governments have promised to provide assistance to help the Australian workers find new jobs.

Economists have said almost a third of workers made redundant by the closure of Bridgestone's Adelaide factory will probably not find alternative jobs.