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200 Bombardier staff to lose jobs this year

By John Mulgrew

Published 27/10/2016

Bombardier is facing a tough time in an uncertain global airline market
Bombardier is facing a tough time in an uncertain global airline market

Bombardier is bringing forward another 200 jobs losses in Belfast one year earlier than planned, it's emerged.

It planned to slash 1,080 jobs in 2016 and 2017. Around half of those were supposed to go this year, with the remainder in 2017.

The company has already brought forward 100 or so posts, but now the remainder – around 200 additional staff – will lose their jobs this year.

It comes just after the Canadian plane maker announced a further 7,500 staff cuts globally, prompting fears of hundreds of job losses here in Northern Ireland.

A spokeswoman for Bombardier said: "We have advised our employees that we are initiating the process to conclude the planned workforce reduction originally announced in February. We now expect to complete the release of those impacted within our Belfast workforce within the next few months.

"This is a very difficult and challenging time for all our workforce and their families, but it is crucial to our long-term future that we continue to significantly reduce our costs and improve our competitiveness.

"We will continue to explore ways to mitigate the number of compulsory redundancies in relation to the completion of this workforce reduction."

Davy Thompson of union Unite, said: "Bombardier’s announcement will mean that all 1,080 redundancies planned over a two year period will now happen in the current year; 200 more workers will receive redundancy in the months to come.

“This decision has been made against a backdrop where the company’s corporate management are seeking an additional 7,500 job-losses globally. While we are disappointed at the news we recognise that it reflects the desire of local management to sustain more operations in Belfast for the long-term.

“Unite will continue working with management locally with the aim of securing jobs and defending terms and conditions”, Mr Thompson continued."

The plane maker, which employs around 5,000 staff in Belfast, is understood to be cutting two-thirds of the jobs in Bombardier Transportation.

The rest of the cuts will be made in the aerospace division.

But the company has not said how many Northern Ireland jobs will be affected.

Bombardier's main operation here is in Belfast, but it also has factories in Newtownabbey, Dunmurry and Newtownards.

A spokeswoman for Bombardier in Belfast said: "Following the update by Bombardier Inc on its five-year turnaround plan, we will be evaluating the impact on our Belfast operations and will communicate with our employees when that is completed.

"We are not in a position to elaborate further at this time."

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