(AFP) – Nov 24, 2010
BRATISLAVA — South Korean giant Samsung Electronics said Wednesday it would hire 1,000 new employees in Slovakia to boost production of LCD TV sets.
"In the upcoming months, the company will hire 1,000 people in its two Slovak plants," Anton Ondrej from the company's communication department told AFP.
Samsung produces LCD and LED TV sets at its plant in Galanta, western Slovakia, where it employs 3,000 people.
Samsung also runs a plant in Voderady, western Slovakia, the South Korean company's sole LCD module plant in Europe.
The company, which launched production in Slovakia in 2002, expects this year's production to reach the 2009 level of approximately six million TV sets.
"The demand is still fragile amid the global downturn," Ondrej said, adding that most of the company's production is exported to Germany, France and Italy with domestic demand representing less than one percent.
"We saw high demand in the first half of 2010 thanks to the football World Cup," he added.
Electronics production at plants run by South Korean Samsung and Taiwan's Foxconn is one of the engines of the recovering Slovak economy which currently has a near 12 percent jobless rate.
Slovakia, an ex-communist state of 5.4 million people which joined the EU in 2004 and the eurozone last year, saw its economy shrink 4.7 percent in 2009 amid the global downturn.
The country's central bank has forecast that the economy will rebound this year with 4.3-percent growth, and expand by 3.0 percent in 2011.
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