The Iron and Steel Company’s employees on Sunday organized a protest in front of the company’s headquarters against its decision to liquidate and demanded that the government intervene to stop the move.
They also called for the state to help modernize the company and preserve its assets, which are estimated at LE120 billion.
A member of the Board of Directors of the Holding Company for Metal Industries Khaled al-Feki said that this step will destroy one of the largest industrial institutes in the Middle East, which has proudly developed many of Egypt’s national projects including the High Dam and succeeded at establishing new iron and steel companies in various other Arab nations such as Algeria and Saudi Arabia.
The company also provides Egyptian hospitals with oxygen cylinders to confront the coronavirus.
Feki denied that the move to liquidate was brought on by increasing debts by hiring more employees pointing out that the company has decreased in size and employs 6,500 employees, down from 21,000, with an estimated 4,500 workers by 2022.
The real reason for the move is due to mismanagement from its holding company, which refuses to maintain production equipment coupled with an increase of energy prices, including electricity and gas.
The extraordinary general assembly had previously decided to divide the company into the the Iron and Steel Company, and the Company of Mines and Quarries which will partner with the private sector.
Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm