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Ballot begins

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Fujitsu is facing likely strike action. The Unite union is balloting its 1,500 members at the firm next week.

The union believes cuts to pensions and pay will slash about 20 per cent from its members' total pay packages.

The vote begins 12 October, and the result should be known by 30 October. A consultative vote on proposals to shut the final salary pension scheme and impose a company-wide pay freeze were overwhelmingly in favour of strike action, and 87 per cent were in favour of a strike.

Peter Skyte, national officer for Unite, said: "Unite members are asking why they should lose their jobs and tighten their belts when last year the company paid out about £150 million to shareholders and around £1.6 million to two directors as compensation for loss of office.

"The company imposed a pay freeze on UK staff earlier this year just a week before it was due to take effect, withdrawing promised pay rises to employees."

Fujitsu warned staff of a likely 1, 200 redundancies, about ten per cent of the UK workforce, when it posted disappointing results in August. But the process has not been going entirely smoothly - the staff consultative committee resigned en masse last month, blaming management for failing to properly consult it on the process.

The full statement is here. ®

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