Due to the difficult global economic situation in 2009 WACKER applied for short-time work in January for Siltronic AG and in February for Wacker Chemie AG. The measure will initially last six months in each case. This means that individual production facilities can adjust employee numbers flexibly to reflect their specific order and capacity-utilization levels. Some 6,000 production employees work at WACKER in Germany.
In 2009, we will hire new employees and use contract workers as needed. For the expansion of our polysilicon production plant in Nünchritz, we will nevertheless create some 120 additional jobs. WACKER will keep the number of vocational training slots constant. Recruiting young talent will continue to be a high Group priority. We expect the number of employees to remain more or less unchanged compared to the prior year, and to rise in 2010 due to our expansion projects.