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Sinovel to Put 351 Workers on Leave Amid Slump in Turbine Sales

Sinovel Wind Group Co., the world’s biggest wind-turbine marker by market value, will put 351 workers on leave from Nov. 19 because of an industrywide slump in sales.

The company will pay workers normal wages for the first 30 days of leave and then 80 percent of the Beijing minimum wage for an indefinate period after that, Chen Zheng, a media manager for the company, said by phone. Beijing’s mininum wage is 1,260 yuan ($202) per month.

The number of workers accounts for 12 percent of Sinovel’s employees last year. The Chinese company joined Gamesa Corp. Tecnologica SA of Spain and Denmark’s Vestas Wind Systems A/S to scale back the workforce as competition gutted margins across the industry and subsidy cuts in the U.S. and Europe slowed sales.

Sinovel said in April it had 2,873 workers as of the end of 2011.

The Beijing-based company last month posted its biggest quarterly loss since its initial public offering in January 2011. It also expects a loss this year as “macroeconomics” and government policies curtail orders, Sinovel said Oct. 29. Delayed payments from customers may push up financial costs and bad-debt provisions, it said.

Gamesa said Oct. 25 that it will cut 20 percent of its workforce, while Vestas fired 2,335 in January and reduced manufacturing to contain widening losses.

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