26/04/2006

500 jobs to be axed in Belfast

Around 500 jobs are to be be axed in Belfast as a result of the closure of insurance company Prudential's office in the city.

The insurance firm is also to close offices in Bristol and London, causing a further 200 jobs to be lost while the company transfer work to other sites, such as Craigforth in Scotland, Derby and Mumbai in India.

It is understood that the Bristol office employs 40 people, while the London office, which houses the head office of Egg, the Prudential's Internet bank, employs 120 staff, and will be relocated to other offices in the city.

The site closures are part of a £40m cost-saving programme which was announced in December last year.

The Prudential have said that there will be no compulsory redundancies before the end of the year and the relocation programme will take up to two years to complete.

Prudential chief executive Nick Prettejohn has today said that the redundancies are regrettable and that the company will be consulting with unions and staff organisations to make every effort to ensure that their staff are kept informed and helped through this difficult transition period.

(EF/GB)

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