Factory warned 70 jobs could go in China move

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bosses at Smith & Nephew have warned up to 70 jobs could go at its Hull factory if it goes ahead with plans to move the manufacturing of some of its medical products to China.

The group said the redundancies would be made during the latter half of 2013. It hopes to achieve the majority through voluntary redundancy.

The company, which said it is proud of its heritage in Hull and remains committed to the future of the site, has just over 600 manufacturing workers in the city and a further 250 working in sales, marketing and the head office of the wound management division.

In a statement, the company said: “Although the impact of these proposals will not be felt until the second half of 2013, we are announcing them now because we want to be open with employees about the potential for redundancies.

“However, these plans could change significantly based on the business climate and our commercial and acquisition strategy and we need to be flexible to those changes.”

Last week Smith & Nephew said first quarter sales at its Hull-based wound care division outperformed the market, driven by the success of its suction therapy for hard-to-heal wounds.

The group reported a better-than-expected five per cent rise in trading profits during the first three months of 2012, partly due to a strong performance in knee implants and its restructuring programme.

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