Siemens to Keep Jobs in Germany | Business| Economy and finance news from a German perspective | DW | 24.06.2004
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Siemens to Keep Jobs in Germany

Siemens and the German trade union IG Metall have reached an agreement that will prevent the relocation of as many as 2,000 jobs to Hungary, where labor is cheaper. The agreement follows weeks of tough negotiations between the two sides, with the top management at Siemens demanding concessions from the trade union in an effort to sink costs. In March, Siemens announced that a failure to do so would result in serious layoffs and the migration of jobs eastward. In exchange for a general agreement in which Siemens committed to keep the two factories in the towns of Kamp-Lintfort and Bocholt open, the union members agreed to work an additional five hours a week without additional pay -- bringing their total number of working hours per week to 40. The head of Siemens, Heinrich von Pierer, called the agreement a "victory of rationality."