sisak abs željezara čeličana.jpg
Photograph: Hina / Dario GRZELJ/ ik

 In early December, the contracts of the remaining 100 or so workers of Italy's ABS in Sisak will be cancelled and the steel plant, part of the former Zeljezara Sisak mill, will completely shut down production, workers said on Saturday.

There is no union in ABS to represent them. ABS, which is owned by Italy's Danieli, will decide the fate of the plant by mid-January. Management staff at Sisak were offered work at ABS headquarters in Udine, Italy.

After two Russian and one US company, ABS also gave up on allegedly unprofitable production in Sisak. The Americans and the Italians invested a lot to modernise the plant, now a state-of-the-art steel mill, with ABS investing about EUR 25 million. After it was modernised, the number of workers jumped to 220 and production was off to a good start but, as the mill worked only during the night because of lower electricity prices, production was not cost-effective.

The ABS management warned a number of times that they could not get in contact with the government to agree a lower electricity price given that the plant is a big consumer.

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