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TEL AVIV, Dec 13 (Reuters) - Israel-based Teva Pharmaceutical Industries will unveil a restructuring plan on Thursday, the company said on Wednesday, after a financial news website said the jobs of more than a half of its Israeli workforce were set to be cut.
The plan includes closing its research and development center in the coastal city of Netanya, selling its logistics center in Shoham and cutting 3,300 jobs out of 6,430 in Israel, Calcalist reported, citing people familiar with the matter.
Saddled with nearly $35 billion in debt since acquiring Allergan's Actavis generic drug business for $40.5 billion, Teva made a series of changes after Kare Schultz joined as its new chief executive on Nov. 1.
Teva, the world's largest generic drug maker which employs more than 56,000 people, declined to comment on the details of Wednesday's report. But it confirmed that a restructuring plan was in the works, scheduling a conference call on the matter for 1300 GMT on Thursday.
Israeli Finance Minister Moshe Kahlon said only that he was following the situation closely.
One of the plants earmarked for sale, Calcalist said, is the Teva Tech factory in Israel's southern Negev desert. It produces raw materials for the pharmaceutical industry and employs 870 workers, according to Teva's website.
"This is a young plant ... and hundreds of millions of shekels of Israeli government money were invested here," Meir Babayoff, chairman of the Negev region in the Histadrut labor federation, told Israel Radio.
He vowed to stop any layoffs and called on Israel's government "to wake up," but declined to detail what actions labor leaders plan pending an official announcement from Teva.
Last week Bloomberg reported that the firm was considering cutting up to 10,000 jobs to reduce costs by $1.5 billion to $2 billion in the next two years.
Teva said on Tuesday that Yitzhak Peterburg, who previously served as its chairman and interim CEO, had resigned from its board with immediate effect.
Schultz ousted top division heads last month and said he would combine the firms generic and specialty drug businesses. He had also said Teva was working on a detailed restructuring plan to be unveiled in mid-December. (Additional reporting by Steven Scheer; Editing by Alexander Smith, Greg Mahlich)