Final countdown for Grangemouth’s Dow Chemical plant

Dow Chemicals will be ceasing operations at the end of June
Dow Chemicals will be ceasing operations at the end of June

A major chemical firm is entering its final month of operation but claims half its 60-strong workforce will be starting new jobs.

The closure of the Dow manufacturing plant in Wholeflats Road, Grangemouth, was announced by the American company last December due to “ongoing economic uncertainty” and a “significant deterioration of demand” for the site’s products which are used in the construction industry.

Dow confirmed this week the site would cease production at the end of the month and then begin a period of clean out, decommissioning and demolition which will run into 2015.

East Falkirk MP Michael Connarty has been consulting management on the issue of workers’ jobs.

He said: “I was told they have an arrangement with Ineos where people from Dow are being allowed to take up vacancies at Ineos as long as it does not interfere with the smooth running of the Dow Chemical site and the orders they have still to complete.”

Dow stressed it had fulfilled its commitment to help its workforce take up alternative employment.

A spokesperson said: “At the end of June around 50 per cent of the current workforce will leave, but we are delighted to advise all of them have new jobs to move to, either in Dow’s joint venture Sadara Chemical Company, or in the local Grangemouth area.

“We have a good working relationship with Ineos and other local industry to ensure we could achieve this level of successful redeployment. The workforce left on site will work on the decommissioning of the plant.”