Metallurgists of Vladikavkaz demanding reopening of “Electrozynk” plant
In 9th of November, at Nothern Ossetian regional center, Vladikavkaz, disgrunted workers of “Electrozync” plant protested against its closure. Workers demanded restarting of production, returning their jobs back, allowing them to provide for their families and repay debts.
Number of people, which took part in protests is estimated around one thousand, most of them are former workers of the plant and their family members. About 700 people lost their job, and now working unofficialy. Average level of salaries on a plant before the accident was much higher then now, which makes repaying of the debts, taken in a better days, much harder.
Fire had burned “Electrozync” plant almost a year ago. Among the reasons listed behind the accident were short-circuits and arson. During the fire, city dwellers were in panic, fearing for the possible air pollution caused by burning chemicals, because even before this accident, plant was considered as a big contributor to decline of local ecological safety.
In 2004 plant was bought by UGMK holding. While new owners were boasting about “saving the jobs for locals”, instead of modernizing equipment and organising production capabilities in compliance with safety and ecological regulations, they exploited already outdated equipment to the limits.
Interesting fact: all shares of UGMK divided between four oligarchs. Half of them controlled by Iskander Makhmudov, whose links with organised crime are a subject of media gossips.
In 2017, all four shareholders received 15 billions of rubles in profits. Some of this money were gained by overexploitation of outdated equipment in “Electrozync”. Now, when plant needs rebuilding from the ashes, which is obvuously costly endeavour, they considered such measures as “financially inappropriate”.
This is clear illustration of capitalist’s attitude to their enterprise, and to people, working on them. Bleeding dry out of producing capabilities with minimal investment, not caring about the consequences of such actions. How city dwellers will deal with outcomes of destroyed plant, how former workers will provide for their families is not their concern.