Unilin will halt laminate production at Wielsbeke in West Flanders for three weeks during the fall and Christmas holidays. Thousands of workers are temporarily unemployed. That reports “De Tijd”.
The plant, where QuickStep floors are produced, employs 1,100 people. Thousands could fall back on temporary unemployment under the new energy crisis regime. “They keep 70 percent of their regular salary,” spokesman Sander Laredon said.
Unilin, the European division of US-listed flooring giant Mohawk, sees its insulation boards still selling smoothly. On the other hand, demand for parquet, laminate and vinyl floors fell 20 to 30 percent, according to the third-quarter figures show.
At the same time, the prices of raw materials and energy soared soaring. “They go up to 300 to 400 percent,” Laredon says. “We feel this fairly immediately in the raw materials. As for energy prices, things are headed toward a precipice as contracts have to be renewed.”
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