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US printing company RR Donnelley & Sons shuts down Argentina plant, cutting about 400 jobs

A worker stands next to burning tires outside the entrance of RR Donnelley printing plant in the outskirts of Buenos Aires, Argentina, Monday, Aug. 11, 2014. RR Donnelley, a Fortune 500 company from Chicago, closed its plant in Argentina without warning catching its 400 workers by surprise when they showed up for work Monday morning. The company posted a letter outside it's entrance announcing its closing due to

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A worker stands next to burning tires outside the entrance of RR Donnelley printing plant in the outskirts of Buenos Aires, Argentina, Monday, Aug. 11, 2014. RR Donnelley, a Fortune 500 company from Chicago, closed its plant in Argentina without warning catching its 400 workers by surprise when they showed up for work Monday morning. The company posted a letter outside it's entrance announcing its closing due to "unsolvable crisis." (AP Photo/Victor R. Caivano)

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina - A global printing company based in the U.S. shuttered its plant Monday in Argentina amid tough economic times in the South American country.

Employees of the R.R. Donnelley & Sons plant on the outskirts of Buenos Aires showed up to find the gates locked and a note on the door informing them the operation is now closed.

"We profoundly regret to inform you that, confronted by an insurmountable crisis and having considered all the viable alternatives, we are closing our operations in Argentina," the note read in part.

Some workers staged an impromptu protest, setting tires on fire outside the gate and beating on drums. Union leaders said they would meet with Ministry of Labor officials in an attempt to reverse the layoff of about 400 workers at the plant who produced a number of leading magazines.

The company's statement did not disclose details about what prompted the closure. A spokeswoman at the company's headquarters in Chicago did not respond to a phone message or email requesting comment.

The closure comes as Argentina is in recession, with an unemployment rate of about 11 per cent.

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