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Oce intends to transfer part of its assembly activities to China and Eastern Europe

Press release from the issuing company

Venlo, 29 September 2003— Oce-Technologies B.V. intends to transfer part of its assembly activities for printers and the associated sourcing of components from Venlo to Eastern Europe and China in 2004. These plans have been submitted to the works council today for their advice, and the social partners have been informed. As a result of these measures Océ expects that approximately 175 jobs will be lost in Venlo in the course of next year. The company expects to achieve a cost price reduction in the order of several tens of per cent by transferring the assembly activities concerned to countries with lower labour cost levels, in addition to lower purchasing costs which can be achieved in these countries. This cost price reduction will enable Océ to strengthen its competitive position on the world market. In addition, the transfer of part of the assembly activities to the Far East will enable Océ to intensify its market presence in that region. It is planned that the assembly of modules will be transferred to Eastern Europe during 2004, while the assembly of fully developed wide format printing systems will be transferred to China. Océ intends to focus in Venlo on knowledge-intensive activities in the areas of R&D and Manufacturing & Logistics, including the development and the production of strategic components and the assembly of complex printing systems for the world market. More than 3,000 people are at present employed at the Océ sites in Venlo. Océ is holding discussions with the works council and trade unions about these plans. The company intends to provide employees whose jobs are lost with support in finding new positions over an extended period. Compulsory redundancies cannot be ruled out. In July 2003 Océ announced that it was conducting a study into the possibilities of transferring activities to countries with lower labour costs. The policy plans announced today are among the outcomes of this study. The plans were announced and explained to employees in the assembly departments this morning in person by Mr. Nico Koole, director of Océ Manufacturing & Logistics.