Sanofi workers threaten hunger strike
The employees of Sanofi Bangladesh yesterday threatened to go on a hunger strike from Saturday until the company's management fulfills their demands.
The Sanofi Bangladesh Limited Workers-Employees Association (SBLWEA) again alleged that the Sanofi Bangladesh was exiting the country without paying any compensation to its employees.
The SBLWEA made this announcement at a press conference held at the Economic Reporters Forum in Dhaka yesterday.
The briefing came after Beximco Pharmaceuticals recently announced that it was set to acquire a 54.6 per cent stake in Sanofi Bangladesh for about Tk 400 crore as it looks to expand its product base and diversify into new areas.
With this, the French pharmaceuticals giant will exit Bangladesh, ending its presence in the country that spans more than six decades, as it has been struggling to compete with local companies.
There are around 1,000 employees working for Sanofi Bangladesh.
"Sanofi is leaving the country by selling its shares but they will not give any kind of financial compensation to its staff," said Sanjib Kumar Chakraborty, general secretary of the SBLWEA.
However, the company has assured that it would provide all necessary compensation before completing the hand over.
In a statement issued late last month, Sanofi Bangladesh said it consistently reaffirmed that its employees' interests would be integral in the final selection of the buyer of the stake.
Sanofi said its employees will continue operations on the current terms and conditions that have been in place for three years until the transaction is closed. The employees will also continue to receive the same benefits.
Sanofi Bangladesh had initially committed to a 12-month collective employment guarantee, said the statement.
However, SBLWEA President Md Nuruzzaman Raju said the management of Sanofi Bangladesh is yet to respond to their demands and have not shown any interest in discussing the issue as of yet.