Future unclear for Kodak IT staff

Kodak Australia is not commenting on the future of the company's 30 IT jobs after the company's US parent unveiled its strategy to move away from film as it embraces digital imaging.

Kodak's local IT staff are based at the company's Australasian head office in Melbourne.

Commenting on the future of those staff, a spokesperson for Kodak Australia said the parent company "was still developing employment plans worldwide".

He claimed it was too early to specify how Kodak's global restructuring plans would impact its 30 IT staff in Australia. The company does not expect any of its IT activities to be affected this year as a result of plans to consolidate its imaging business worldwide, the spokesman said.

The jobs of more than 400 Kodak Australia workers remain in limbo after the company's US parent unveiled its strategy to shift away from film as it embraces digital imaging.

The local operation's US parent Eastman Kodak last week announced it would cut 12,000 to 15,000 jobs worldwide -- about 20 per cent of Kodak's global staff.

Union leaders in Australia said Kodak's Coburg manufacturing plant could be slated for closure.

Kodak has around 2000 employees here, 1200 of whom work at its film producing plant in Coburg, Victoria and the rest at Kodak Express photo-labs in shopping centres and department stores.

However, the company spokesman said: "We have no current plans for the closure of the site," he said.

At the company's headquarters in Rochester, New York, Eastman Kodak chairman and chief executive Daniel Carp outlined plans for a "dramatically lower cost structure", selling off facilities and slashing jobs to save between $US800 million and $US1 billion (around $1 billion to $1.3 billion) in annual costs by 2007.

The imaging group said it would pare a fifth of the workforce over three years and remove about one-third of its factory floorspace by consolidating and selling off surplus assets.

- with AAP

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