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Issue #1706      October 14, 2015

AWU seeks clarification

The Australia Workers’ Union has sought meetings with Alcoa to discuss the possible ramifications of the company’s announcement it will separate into two independent, publicly-traded companies.

Alcoa announced it would be looking to split into an upstream company and a value-add company. AWU national secretary Scott McDine said as the largest union within Alcoa in Australia the union is seeking clarification.

“We need Alcoa to explain to us what this means on a global and on a domestic level so we can consider how it might affect our members,” Mr McDine said.

“The AWU is the largest union in the aluminium sector, with thousands of members in the industry throughout Australia. This is a major global move from Alcoa and we need to understand the potential ramifications.

“The split into two companies and how assets and liabilities are allocated is obviously of significant interest to the AWU.”

Mr McDine noted that in the split Alcoa had kept its energy assets and bauxite, alumina and aluminium assets together in the upstream company. “Aluminium manufacturing will always be an energy intensive industry and the link between it and energy is clear and reflected in Alcoa’s split,” Mr McDine said.

“This underscores the urgent need for Australia to introduce a gas reservation scheme so that Alcoa’s local operations have access to affordable, reliable, low-emission energy in this country.”

Next article – Uni deregulation delayed not ditched

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