Panasonic to make 15,000 job cuts

Panasonic is set to cut 15,000 jobs and close 27 manufacturing plants worldwide by the end of March 2010.

The electronics giant could not confirm the security of its 1,500 staff in the UK, but has forecast that 50% of the job cuts will affect its overseas sites, while the remaining half will be made in Japan.

Some reports suggest 50 jobs could go from the European Research and Development Centre in Cardiff. Some 1,000 staff are employed there, and a further 500 work at the Newport site, which manufacturers telephone switchboards.

A spokeswoman for Panasonic said: “By the end of March 2010, we expect that the total size of employee reduction worldwide may reach 15,000, of which about half the reduction may come from Japan, and the rest from outside of Japan.

“Regarding factory closures, we can only mention names of the sites which we have announced already, and we do not [wish to] disclose any further information. Although we mention these figures, it is not our priority to reduce headcount or manufacturing sites, but our ultimate goal is always to strengthen our business operation and management structure.”

Elsewhere, UK-based manufacturers announced details of redundancies yesterday. Car manufacturer Ford announced that it was seeking 500 voluntary redundancies at its Southampton plant, while 350 more will be sought from its other UK operations. TT Electronics has also cut 500 jobs in the UK.

Energy supplier EON announced plans to cut 450 jobs across offices nationwide.

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