New options for Nokia's German plant

While the dispute over Nokia's closure of its German manufacturing plant was hugely overshadowed by the company's announcements last week in Barcelona, the problem has failed to disappear.

However, there might be the first glimmer of a potential solution. Firstly, Nokia has - rather belatedly - opened discussions with its German works council and formed a joint working group with North Rhine-Westphalia government to find 'innovative solutions' for the Bochum plant.

Whether either of these initiatives lead to a positive outcome for the workers is unclear. But, both Nokia and the North Rhine-Westphalia government have admitted to receiving indications of interest from German and foreign investors for the company's factory, which might offer them a solution to a 'difficult' problem.

However, in a letter to The Financial Times, an executive VP of Nokia, Veli Sundbäck, remained robust in the company's defence by stating that Nokia had invested some €600 million in the Bochum site since 1994, well above the amount stipulated in the agreement with the North Rhine-Westphalia government.

For more on this story:
- read AFX