A year to the day after the announcement of the closure of the Jonquière cardboard by the company Graphic Packaging, the member for Jonquière in the National Assembly and interim leader of the Parti Quebecois, Sylvain Gaudreault, remains convinced that the government of Quebec abandoned the region to obtain assurance that the plant in East Angus would be spared.
“As long as the plant will be standing, I hope that a developer is interested in this industrial site valuable. We had a first sale for small equipment and there will be in August a second sale for heavier industrial equipment. ”
Sylvain Gaudreault always in mind a meeting in Montreal between the Quebec government representatives and senior management of the company. MP always criticizes the then minister responsible for the Economy, Jacques Daoust, have met with the company unless accompanied labor leaders in Jonquiere.
“We will long remember the statement of the Minister Daoust at the exit of the meeting. The government had been assured of maintaining East Angus for the closure of Jonquiere. The day after the closure of Jonquiere, the company increased the price of cardboard and made profits of $ 175 million thereafter. This is exactly the scenario that occurred. ”
Sylvain Gaudreault no longer believed in the recovery committee set up by the government and which yielded no results so far. He does not see how one can seriously talk about a recovery committee while people are excluded as major suppliers or politics.
“No one has taken control of the revitalization committee of the Jonquière plant. We have not even asked the alderman to Promotion Saguenay or the member to join the committee. This is mostly the opposite happened. There has never been a genuine political will of the Government of Quebec to find a buyer for the facility. ”
The member for Jonquiere, the government has the power to intervene with companies that want to dispose of industrial plants. Quebec went ahead with the takeover of the assets of an iron mine on the North Shore and continues his adventure with investments to keep the equipment in hopes to restart operations. In Jonquiere, Mr. Gaudreault accuses the government of not having lifted a finger when the company sold its assets to a demolition company that will one day or another for demolition of industrial buildings located on the site of the cardboard.
The conclusion of this adventure is the disappearance of 140 jobs in the manufacturing sector. “Workers have virtually all been able to find jobs, but often at below. The union president informed me that a dozen of his colleagues have left the area. We must add to these jobs impacts on subcontracting as well as major suppliers, “said the member for Jonquiere.