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Updated: Malta Enterprise talks with Actavis to continue

Updated 5.40pm

The first urgent meeting held between Matla Enterprise and Actavis on a decision taken by the company's international management to close the company's research and development branch in Malta was positive and agreement was reached for discussions to continue, the ministry said this evening.

It said that the company's local manage would be moving proposals which were being discussed with ME to the international management with the aim of finding a solution that would safeguard the people affected.

Earlier today, Finance Minister Tonio Fenech instructed Malta Enterprise to hold urgent talks with Actavis after it announced that it will close its R&D unit in Malta, dismissing 64 workers by the end of the year,

The decision was taken at group headquarters as part of restructuring in the wake of the company’s merger with Watson.

The Finance Ministry said the restructuring will not affect the 1,000 other Actavis workers in Malta, engaged in manufacturing, sales and marketing.

Nonetheless, the ministry said, Malta Enterprise is intervening on behalf of the 64 workers and will seek alternative solutions and offer government aid.

The 64 workers involved were told of the decision during a meeting with managers this morning.

Actavis has two plants in Malta - at Bulebel and Hal Far. The affected workers are at the Bulebel plant.

The company was recently taken over by American company Watson, which already operates Arrowpharm in Hal Far.

The takeover meant that Actavis Watson became the largest pharmaceutical company in Malta.

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