Van Hool, the Belgian tanker manufacturer, said it was making “maximum efforts” to find a solution to its financial problems, following press speculation about its future.

It said co-chief executive Marc Zwaaneveld was sticking to his 31 March deadline to get the ‘Van Hool Recovery Plan’ approved in an attempt to turn its fortunes around.

In a statement, the company, which also manufactures buses and coaches, said its ”challenging yet feasible” plan had been presented during a Special Works Council to employee representatives and all employees had been informed.

Previously, the company said the plan involved a strategic refocus of its activities and that it would involve “the departure of around 1,100 valued colleagues”.

Zwaaneveld said: “We absolutely refuse to give up and continue to make maximum efforts to find a solution by the end of March.

“We believe that a solution is still achievable, but we need the maximum support from all involved parties. Let’s work together and remain calm to make a sustainable future possible.”

Earlier this month, Van Hool said the challenging financial conditions were caused by the impact of the corona virus, high energy costs, high inflation and global component supply problems.

It added that its realignment plans involved its industrial vehicles division in Koningshooikt focusing on semi-trailers “requiring a higher degree of expertise and offering higher added value for the customer as well as for the company”.