Did you know that Embraer has ceased to pay R$ 1.1 billion in taxes in only three years? This amount corresponds to the payroll tax exemption granted by the Federal Government from the year 2013 through 2015. It is a lot of money that did not get into the Government’s coffers. Yeah it is so. Even with this fortune in tax incentives, Embraer wants to lay off workers at its plants around the country. Aiming at not causing negative impact on its image of “a citizen company”, Embraer wants to convince everyone that PDV (Voluntary Resignations Plan) is not lay-off.
The name does not matter. PDV (Voluntary Resignations Plan) is lay-off and is not good either for workers or for the country. Since Embraer announced it would open the PDV, the mood in the company is of great stress. It is impossible not to remember the February 19th, 2009, when Embraer laid off more than 4,000 employees. We live in a time when there are more than 11 million unemployed workers in the country and no one wants to join this statistic. We do not know yet how many workers are at Embraer’ crosshairs, but we already know that the company wants to reduce expenses by U$ 200 million a year. Although the company denies any connection with the corruption denouncement investigated by Federal Prosecutors, there is no way to deny the “coincidence” between the figures. In the balance sheet of the second quarter this year, Embraer recorded a provisioning in the amount (guess!) of US$ 200 million to pay possible fines to be charged by the US government.
Embraer is under investigation for involvement in the case of kickbacks in order to ensure the sale of eight Super Tucano aircrafts to the Air Force of the Dominican Republic. Last week, August 10th, a former Minister of Defense of that country and two businessmen were arrested on charges of receiving bribes of U$ 3.5 million to facilitate Embraer in the Purchase Contract of the aircrafts.
The complaint was made in 2010 by the US government’s Department of Justice. US legislation establishes punishment for companies doing business in that country (such as Embraer) which commit corruption. In this case, the punishment may come in the form of a fine. However let us consider that the fine amount has nothing to do with the layoffs. However even so, Embraer owes explanations to society. The company has ceased to pay R$ 1.1 billion in taxes, is involved in corruption and still plans to make mass layoffs.
We cannot pretend that Embraer did not have other way excepting the lay-off. Society must demand that the Federal Government stop these layoffs. The aircraft manufacturer is one of the companies that have benefited the most from the tax exemption policy payroll. Embraer has debts with the population. And this debt has to be paid with jobs creation and not with job cuts. It must also be highlight that the denationalization of Embraer aircrafts is an indisputable factor of jobs closure in Brazil.
For many years the Metalworkers Union has been alerting the government on the consequences of the transfer of Embraer’s production part to abroad. Neither the Federal nor the State nor the Municipal governments have taken any action to reverse this situation.
But the workers have already given their message. In assembly, they approved the struggles plan to say no to the layoffs. Now we must start with the unified mobilization in defense of jobs. Be it at Embraer or in any other company.