Bank of France to cut jobs at banknote facilities

FRANCE - The Bank of France yesterday informed unions of 494 job cuts by 2005 in its banknote production units. The plan, aimed at bringing down the cost of banknote production to improve competitiveness, mainly affects facilities at Chamalieres and Vic-le-Comte in the Puy-de-Dome department.

The Bank must print 1.7 billion euro notes in September and 800 million more thereafter for reserve stocks. It says that the job cuts have to be made; it must reduce the cost of producing each note to 50