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Job loss fears at defence giant

Defence giant BAE Systems is reportedly set to announce thousands more job losses.

The firm has previously warned that it expects to further cut staffing levels, and Sky News claims up to 3,000 posts will go.

A BAE spokeswoman said: "BAE Systems has informed staff that we are reviewing our operations across various businesses to make sure the company is performing as effectively and efficiently as possible, both in delivering our commitments to existing customers and ensuring the company is best placed to secure future business.

"As the outcome of this review becomes clear, we will, as always, communicate to our employees as a priority."

Shadow defence secretary Jim Murphy said the reports would be "a devastating blow for Lancashire and Yorkshire and a real knock for UK manufacturing".

The facilities expected to be worst affected are BAE's military aircraft division in Warton, Lancashire, and Brough, East Riding of Yorkshire.

"We need a fast response from ministers with a clear plan of action," Mr Murphy said.

"At a time when it is so hard to find a new job this is a dreadful moment to lose the one you have," he said.

He went on: "The defence industry is vital to the UK, supporting both our forces on the frontline and the wider UK economy. Labour's industrial strategy has been replaced with this Government's deficit reduction plan and as a result both our industrial base and our equipment programme are being hit."

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