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Siemens to shut Canadian wind turbine blade plant by early 2018

Time:2017-07-18 13:42:00
July 18 (Renewables Now) - Siemens Wind Power will close by early 2018 its manufacturing plant in Tillsonburg, in the Canadian province of Ontario, which has produced over 2,500 blades since 2011.

Of the plant’s 340 employees, 206 will be laid off with immediate effect. The remaining jobs will be phased out through 2017.
“The harsh reality is that, in order to remain competitive, we must constantly evaluate our global manufacturing footprint,” said David Hickey, head of the Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy SA (BME:GAM) operations in Canada.
The company is closing the plant because it would not be easy to upgrade it so that it can make the significantly larger blades sought in the market. “The significant investments necessary to bring the plant in line with current market requirements would result in costs that could not be competitive in the global markets,” says the press release.
Siemens Gamesa noted that competition on the wind market has been increasing and prices have gone down by more than 66% in the last seven years. In addition, demand in Eastern Canada is on the slide, and there is uncertainty around US tax policy.
Spanish wind turbine maker Gamesa merged with Siemens Wind Power in April.