27/11/2001

BAE to shed jobs after closure of jet programme

Aerospace company BAE Systems is to cease involvement in its regional jet programmes, leading to the loss of over 1,500 jobs throughout the UK.

With plants in Manchester and Prestwick, the news that BAE Systems is to cut back on its British operations has been described as a “devastating blow for the country’s aerospace industry” by Sir Ken Jackson, who spoke on behalf of the Amalgamated Engineering and Electrical Union. The losses also follow a similar decision taken by the company in August to shed 260 jobs at several plants in Lancashire.

BAE has blamed reduced demand in the civil aerospace market as prompting the cuts, with Chief Executive John Weston describing the trading outlook since September as “substantially” altered for the worse. The move will mean an end to production of the company’s popular 146 jet, and the group expects deliveries for its Airbus commercial jet to fall to 300 for the forthcoming year.

A global systems, defence and aerospace company with reach into the air, land, sea and space defence market sectors, BAE Systems reported sales of £12.2 billion and turnover of £9.6 billion for the year-end 2000. With a presence across all five continents, and with customers in 129 countries, the company employs more than 100,000 employees worldwide. (CL)

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