Leoni, which has almost half its workforce in North Africa, faces continued uncertainty over the political situation in Egypt, Tunisia and elsewhere in the region.
“You can’t yet speak of business as usual; the situation can change by the day,” said Sven Schmidt, spokesman for the German maker of wire harnesses.
When the political turmoil started, the company was forced to reduce output substantially. “Many workers didn’t show up, either because they wanted to protect their houses from looting, or because buses didn’t run,” Schmidt said.
Leoni’s North African plants are currently running at near-normal production levels again, Schmidt said. The company has adapted shifts to official curfews and has, on some occasions, chartered its own buses to get people to work.
Leoni employs 4,000 workers at a plant in Cairo and another 12,000 in various factories in Tunisia.
Customers do not yet face shortages of Leoni products. That is because the company had over-produced in the run-up to the political unrest in North Africa. Schmidt said much of this output is still underway to customers. The company also airfreighted some essential products while Egyptian ports were closed.