Defence company BAE Systems has announced nearly 3,000 job losses in the UK, including IT, in a bid to cut costs.
The potential job losses are in the company’s Military Air & Information and shared services businesses, and at its head office in Farnborough.
BAE Systems said that the move is in response to the scaled-back Typhoon aircraft programme and pressures on defence budgets in the US.
Ian King, chief executive of BAE Systems, said: “Some of our major programmes have seen significant changes. The four partner nations in the Typhoon programme have agreed to slow production rates to help ease their budget pressures. Whilst this will help extend our production schedule and ensure the production line stays open until we receive anticipated export contracts, it does reduce the workload at a number of our sites.
“Pressure on the US defence budget and top level programme changes mean the anticipated increase in F-35 production rates will be slower than originally planned, again impacting on our expected workload.”
BAE Systems revealed that some 2,933 jobs in the UK may be cut, along with nine jobs overseas, making a total of 2,942 jobs at risk.
The company’s sites in Samlesbury, Lancashire (565 redundancies), Brough, East Riding of Yorkshire (899 redundancies) and Warton and Preston, Lancashire (843 redundancies) will be hardest hit, and are related to the decreased demand for the Typhoon and F-35 programmes.
The job losses at Christchurch (51), Hillend (35), Malvern (seven), Frimley (81), Yeovil (132) and New Malden (19) are linked with “reducing workload on information programmes and the need to remain competitive”.
Meanwhile, the job losses at Farnborough (78) have been driven by a reduction in Harrier and Tornado work. The UK Ministry of Defence cancelled its contracts with BAE Systems for the Harrier after the government’s Strategic Defence and Security Review, which led to 1,307 job losses in the UK last December.
Redundancies are also planned for Filton, Bristol (74), Great Baddow, Essex (26), Loughborough (21) and other UK locations including Royal Air Force bases (102).
“To ensure we remain competitive, both in the UK and internationally, we need to reduce the overall costs of our businesses in-line with our reduced workload.
“This transformation process is not going to be easy. We understand that this is a time of uncertainty for our employees and we are committed to working with them and their representatives to explore ways of mitigating the potential job losses,” King said.
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