ABB says a decision to close its distribution transformer manufacturing operations in New Plymouth is based on challenging market conditions.

The closure of the manufacturing facility means the loss of 59 jobs. The factory will close by April 28, the company said in a statement.

"After careful consideration, this decision is based on challenging market conditions making it difficult for the unit to be competitive." The employees were told on Friday.

ABB it will try to relocate employees to other businesses its owns where possible.

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ABB makes digital industrial equipment and systems. It operates in more than 100 countries and employs about 135,000 people.

It has been in New Zealand for more 80 years and employs about 500 people across 11 locations, including three manufacturing sites.

-AAP