Press statement regarding working conditions in company LEONI

Kraljevo, March 10, 2023

Due to the frequent, and above all incorrect statements by certain media regarding the working conditions in the LEONI factory in Kraljevo, we consider our duty to inform the public more closely about our employees’ actual working environment.

Company LEONI is currently the largest industrial employer in the country, with a total number of around 14,000 employees, and an equal number of secure, stable jobs provided to the citizens of the Republic of Serbia. It is the same number of individuals or families that are earning either partially or entirely their monthly income by working in our company. As LEONI belongs to the auto industry branch, a labor-intensive and very dynamic one, accordingly, the planning and dynamics of our production is based on the organization of the production of our customer. As is generally known, the overall automotive industry was and still is facing a high dynamic in regard to production quantities following the Corona pandemic and the subsequent semiconductor crisis and other material shortages. Despite these circumstances causing unsteady workload, the planning of LEONI’s shifts and working hours is done respecting the rest time as defined and in accordance with the Labor Law of the Republic of Serbia.

Given the fact that our employees are our most valuable asset, since the establishment of our company in Serbia, we are working in accordance with highest standards and improving working conditions. Thus, ergonomically adapted workplaces, clean and modern working environment characterize all parts of our premises. This is supported by the fact that all of our factories have workplaces adapted to people with a certain type of disability, resulting in 255 people with disabilities being employed in our company. As we are an equal opportunity employer, securing work in our company is available to all, regardless of age or level of education. The entire training process for the new hires is provided in our training center, and our employees, through both internal and external learning opportunities, are provided with further professional development and, in this way, we invest in and develop our leaders.

In order to have a quality break at work, our employees are provided with two modern canteens within the factory in Kraljevo, and a cooked meal at an affordable price. As one of the most prominent benefits, we provide our employees with transportation from their place of residence to the factory itself, which is a special type of convenience for people who are coming to work from remote areas.

When speaking about the health care of our employees, the medical institutions that we built as part of our production units aim to improve the health care of employees, easy accessibility and focus on health prevention. Specifically, in Kraljevo, we are talking about an institution in the health system of the Ministry of Health and the Kraljevo Health Center. It is also important to note that the clinic, whose equipment and operation we financed, is available and open to all citizens of Kraljevo aiming at public wellbeing and the overall health of all fellow citizens. For our employees, this service is available on a voluntary basis, and with the aim of faster and easier provision of health care, and it is not a prerequisite for further treatment of the chosen physician.

We would like to note that, as a responsible employer, we were among the first private companies during the Covid-19 pandemic to provide vaccination against this disease for all our employees who wanted to be vaccinated. Additionally, in the ambulances that operate within our factories, we have provided vaccination against the seasonal flu, and numerous preventive examinations, with the aim of preserving the health of our employees.

Also, we are proud to point out that, during the very challenging period of the Covid-19 pandemic, when the whole world was faced with job cuts, reduced income and an uncertain future, not a single employment contract was terminated in our company, not even those that were due to end in that period. Moreover, the regions where we operate are marking an unemployment rate below 10%, specifically in Kraljevo, with the rate being below 7%.

In addition to direct economic contribution, through a social responsibility and sustainability program our company via numerous projects and actions supports young people and those in need, provides better living conditions, and a cleaner, healthier environment in which our employees live and work (Tree planting in urban areas, waste collection from green areas, etc.).

Moreover, we are willing to take comments from our employees serious to further improve our performance as a reliable employer.

Considering certain media allegations related to the accident of our late colleague, Danka Rankovic, we appeal for referring to accurate, actual information and the announcement of GS Nezavisnost -