BA axes jobs, planes and routes in bid to save £650m

British
Airways is to cut 5,800 jobs, abandon flight routes and reduce the size of its
fleet in a bid to reduce costs by £650m a year.

The
cuts, which include a third of head office and support jobs, will take the
total of jobs axed at BA since August 2001 to 13,000 – 23 per cent of the
airline’s workforce of 56,700.

The
business is losing £2 million a day and CEO Rod Eddington says: "We must
transform British Airways into a simpler, leaner, more focused airline so we
can thrive and prosper in an increasingly competitive market."

That
will mean restructuring its European short-haul business to compete with the
no-frills carriers.

The
job cuts will include 400 pilots, 3,400 cabin crew, 800 customer services staff
at Heathrow, 550 customer services staff at Gatwick, 1,500 engineers, 2,600
world sales staff and 800 cargo employees.

About
6,600 jobs will be cut from Heathrow, 3,000 from Gatwick, 1,200 from regional
bases in the UK, and 2,200 from overseas operations.

By Quentin Reade

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