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Job Cut Fears at AstraZeneca PLC (AZN)'s Research Hub


1/14/2013 7:50:34 AM

Fears of further job losses at AstraZeneca's research hub hub at Alderley Park, Cheshire were fuelled as its new chief executive Pascal Soriot re-examines priorities for research and development investment. Last year, the pharmaceutical giant, which employs more than 6,000 at sites in Macclesfield and Alderley Park, announced 7,300 job losses worldwide. This included up to 350 roles at Alderley Park, but there have been reports of further cuts at the research hub, which falls into Chancellor George Osborne's constituency. AstraZeneca, which said it will not comment on speculation, added: “Our strategy review is on-going and, as usual, it would look at all elements of our business. “AstraZeneca has a long history in the UK and a strong presence in the north west – we continue to make a significant contribution to the economy through employment, investment in our business and innovation in the life sciences.” The news comes as Science Minister David Willetts lobbies the NHS to increase its use of an AstraZeneca heart medicine, amid mounting political concern about the drugs company’s commitment to British jobs. Mr Willetts has urged health officials to accelerate the uptake of Brilique, a blood thinner used to treat patients suffering from severe angina or heart attacks, which has sold poorly despite winning a green light from the NHS’s cost-effectiveness watchdog in 2011.

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