The Economy minister Bruno le Maire, has assured on Tuesday that”no site Alstom will only close in France”, trying again to reassure in the face of fears for the employment generated by the merger of the French company with the German Siemens. “Yes there are concerns, they are legitimate”, he stressed, when asked in the national Assembly by the mp (The Constructive-RL-IDU), Béatrice Descamps.
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Siemens is committed, during the announcement of the takeover of Alstom, to maintain employment and industrial sites in France for a period of four years. “We have put in place a monitoring committee that I preside over myself, with my German counterpart, ( … ) to ensure that the commitments of Siemens vis-à-vis Alstom and vis-à-vis the French State,” recalled the minister.
For him, this merger is “good news for the French industry, it is a good news for French employees, this is good news for the sites, and it is a good news for the know-how.”
“We will ensure that this merger of Siemens and Alstom (guarantee) the creation of an industrial giant european rail is able to compete with the best industrial giants in the world,” yet assured Bruno Le Maire.
Later, on the chain CNews, the minister insisted that there would be no “downsizing” in France. “It is the commitment of Siemens vis-à-vis Alstom and vis-à-vis the French State: no site closure, there is no reduction in the number of jobs in France.”
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The SNCF satisfied
For his part, The president of the SNCF, Guillaume Pepy, said Tuesday the press that the public group “has always been in favour of a reconciliation, Alstom-Bombardier, Alstom-Siemens, we had not made a difference.”
“Next to the SNCF, it has always been said that it was necessary to have such as providers providers are very large in size, because first of all they need to have the whole range, ( … ), and everyone knows that Alstom does not have all of the products. The fact of getting close to another big player widening the range.”
Regarding management of infrastructure, SNCF Network is working with Alstom and Siemens, in the areas of signaling, automation, control systems commands. “What is important for us is the long-term sustainability of these issues, because when we invest, we do not invest for a year”, stressed during this same press conference, the president of the SNCF Network, Patrick Jeantet.
“Having a solid industrial group in front of us, which is the new group, is from my point of view extremely interesting from this side, because this new group is going to be one of the major global players, and as such it will give us a visibility, solidity, and on these products,” he detailed, adding that it “does not decrease in a drastic way the competitors”.