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Ericsson to open manufacturing plant in Wellington

Ericsson to open manufacturing plant in Wellington

Feb. 21 (BusinessDesk) - Swedish telecommunications giant Ericsson is to open a new manufacturing facility in Wellington, helping to offset a wave of job losses announced for the capital in recent weeks.

The firm, which is a supplier to the government-backed ultra-fast broadband roll-out, will create 30 jobs at a new factory in the Wellington satellite city of Porirua to produce fibre-optic cable ducts, currently made in Sweden.

"The facility will initially service the New Zealand fibre needs as part of the UFB and Rural Broadband Initiative (RBI) Network deployments, with potential to also meet demand in the Asia Pacific region," said Magnus Kreuger, executive vice-president of Ericsson Cables at a launch in Wellington attended by Communications Minister Amy Adams.

The new roles will be mix of manufacturing and product development.

Two large Wellington employers, New Zealand Post and Contact Energy, have announced some 200-plus job losses.

“Locating the facility in New Zealand means that our delivery timelines will be significantly reduced, we will reduce the environmental impact of the shipping process and have the opportunity to utilise local skills in production and product development,” said Kreuger.

It will produce fibre ducts for Ericsson’s Ribbonet and Micronet ABF systems, starting in the second half of 2013.

Ericsson is an entrenched supplier in the New Zealand market to Telecom, TelstraClear and Vector and is jockeying with major competitors including Alcatel Lucent and Chinese telecom manufacturer Huawei for involvement across the telecommunications infrastructure, including the forthcoming investment in the next generation of mobile technology, the so-called 4G.

The government is scheduled to auction 4G spectrum in the third quarter of this year, and all three infrastructure providers are involved in Telecom test trials of elements required for 4G technology.

(BusinessDesk)

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