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  1. ITV Report

More than 500 jobs to go at Suffolk engineering firm

Delphi Diesel Systems in Sudbury. Credit: ITV News Anglia.

An engineering firm is to close its Suffolk base - with the loss of 520 jobs.

Delphi Diesel Systems, an American-owned conglomerate, says the closure will come in the form of a gradual scaling-down, with the site at Sudbury finally shutting in August 2020.

Workers were told today (Friday August 4) and the company said planned to help staff find jobs elsewhere in the region or at other Delphi sites.

"The decision is the result of predicted falls in the demand for diesel vehicles. Independent analysts predict a substantial decline in the diesel light vehicle market and no significant growth in the much smaller diesel commercial vehicle market."

– Delphi Diesel Systems spokesman.

The union Unite claimed the business - which makes diesel fuel injectors and filters for commercial vehicles - was moving work to Romania, where labour costs are cheaper.

Its assistant general secretary for manufacturing called on the government to come up with a "strong and robust strategy" to help keep engineering jobs in the UK.

"It is time for the business secretary Greg Clark to translate the rhetoric of an industrial strategy into practical action to secure essential UK manufacturing jobs, especially in rural Suffolk where such skilled industrial jobs are thin on the ground. The minister needs to accelerate into top gear."

– Tony Burke, Unite.

The union went on to accuse Dephi of "jumping the gun" and choosing to close the site before it had time to come up with an alternative plan.

"We definitely believe that the company jumped the gun, putting the jobs of the workers and the security of their families in danger, as it did not allow enough time for alternatives to be developed."

– Neal Evans, Unite regional officer.

Unite said the company was continuing to make a six-figure profit each month and promised to campaign for Delphi to reverse the decision.