PMI - lays off more than 300 workers in Serbia..

September 8, 2009 - BELGRADE, Serbia: Back in August Phillip Morris International (PMI) announced it would be laying off about a third of its 910 workers in Serbia. Phillip Morris’ reasoning for the layoffs is to keep competitive and have the most efficient business possible. With these cuts Phillip Morris hopes to increase the productivity of Duvanska Industrija Nis (DIN).

On Monday, September 7th PMI dismissed more than 300 people, or a third of its workforce, at a Serbian subsidiary in order to keep competitive, Beta news agency reported.

“The decision has been made based on a detailed analysis on the Duvanska Industrija Nis (DIN, Tobacco Industry of Nis) business performance and market situation, so a sustainable future of the factory in Nis is secured,” the agency said, quoting a DIN statement.

Earlier the management of DIN said the factory needed no more than 580 employees for the effective business. The job cuts and other measures planned were designed to enable DIN to become increasingly competitive due to lower prices and overall negative economic trends, it said.

According to the latest official data for June, the unemployment rate stood at 26.8 percent in Serbia, which plunged into recession in the first quarter of 2009 as a result of shrinking foreign investment.

US-based PMI bought DIN in 2003, formerly state owned, paying 580 million euros for a controlling 66-percent stake in the privatisation of Serbia’s biggest tobacco factory.

Tobacco in Serbia.. Cigarettes kill 47 a day in Serbia...

Reference: Philip Morris cuts 300 staff in Serbia,, 9/8/2009.

Image - Duvanska Industrija Nis - Tobacco Industry of Nis..