GSK plant review prompts Irish job-loss fears

What Big Pharma giveth, Big Pharma can take away. Or so say business boosters in Ireland, which benefited from drugmakers' expansion in the good years--and now are suffering as companies cut costs and reorient their operations. "From our perspective, these companies have multiple sites here and it leaves us exposed," Matt Moran, director of an industry group in Ireland, tells the Irish Independent.

The latest worry: GlaxoSmithKline's manufacturing operations in Currabinny, Cork, which employes 425 people. The drugmaker is wrapping up a review of the site, with decisions about its future due soon. "A site review is ongoing and it will be finalized in a few weeks," a spokesperson at GSK tells the Independent.

A site review doesn't necessarily mean that jobs will be lost. But other drugmakers in the region have announced job cuts in recent months, so locals are anticipating the worst. Merck's Schering-Plough operations in Cork announced 160 job cuts last week, as the U.S.-based company integrates Schering-Plough, which it bought last year. Last May, Pfizer--in the midst of a global restructuring--said it would cut up to 785 jobs in the area.

- read the Independent piece