Hanjin Shipping cuts 400 employees in South Korea

Hanjin Container ShipThe bankrupting container operator Hanjin Shipping cuts 400 land-based employees in South Korea, aiming to restructure the business and improve survive. The shipper, which applied for court receivership in late August after creditor banks withdrew their support, has about 700 land-based employees in South Korea, which will be reduced by more than 60%. Hanjin Shipping introduced its plan to the labor organizations, giving a prior notice to the 400 employees in November for ending labor relationship by December. The cuts of ground employees in South Korea follow a massive wave of lay-offs in the offices of the shipping operator world wide.

The unions are refusing to accept the decision without a compensation package, as the employees who had been working frantically to contain the fallout from the logistics chaos now face the prospect of layoffs.

Hanjin Shipping is working over restructuring program to reposition its business to an intra-Asia operator. The program was posted to the Seoul Central District Court and aims to revive the bankrupted shipping operator.

Meanwhile, the smaller South Korean rival, Hyundai Merchant Marine (HMM), which already bid for Hanjin’s transpacific operations, also intends to place a bid for Hanjin’s 25% stake in the Spanish terminal in Algeciras. The Seoul Central District Court will receive letters of interest from potential buyers until October 28 and the potential bidders are required to offer final bids by November 4. The asset sale will be completed by the end of next month.