Around 2000 Nokia Corporation (NOK) Chennai Staff Opt For VRS

As already known, Nokia Corporation (ADR) (NYSE:NOK) India’s Chennai facility is under some legal dispute over taxation, and could not form a part of the sale to Microsoft. Nokia management offered its employees the option of early retirement. While the employees are seeking help from the authorities for saving their jobs, few employees have already lost hopes, and at least 2000 of them have opted for the retirement scheme offered by the Nokia Corporation (ADR)(NYSE:NOK)’s management, so far, a senior members of the factory’s labor union told ET.

“Since nobody has offered us any help, what assurance can we give to our employees and on what basis can we ask them not to accept the VRS?” asked a senior union member, requesting anonymity. “We are still trying to get some help, some support but nobody seems to care.”

VRS available till May month

Nokia Corporation (ADR)(NYSE:NOK) was the mobile phone market leader few years back before it got upstaged by the current mobile phone giants Samsung and Apple  Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL). The Chennai plant was Nokia’s important manufacturing destination symbolizing India as an important market.

Owing to certain tax disputes, which are not coming to an end despite the efforts from the company’s management, this unit was not sold to Microsoft and is, now, operating for Microsoft only as a manufacturer on contract. The unit employs around 7000 employees, who are afraid of losing their jobs anytime, in the near future. Nokia intends to cut down on the scale of operations carried out at this facility and therefore announced the VRS in April.

In an email statement to ET, a Nokia spokeswoman said, “All we can share right now is that the VRS package is being offered till May 14.”

Plant requires only 1300 employees

The authorities are not very much sympathetic with the employees and therefore the employees are not able to see any other option than opting for an early retirement scheme, as informed by factory’s labor union’s senior members. It has not been possible to ascertain the exact number of employees, who have accepted the offer.

Nokia Corporation (ADR)(NYSE:NOK) is undertaking discussions with its employees to persuade them to accept the VRS option available or else they will have to go empty handed once the facility is closed down as informed by the senior union members. Employees have, also, been informed that the company has received a contract of manufacturing not more than 1.5 million handsets and strength of only 1,300 employees is needed for that.