European aircraft maker Airbus has reached an agreement to avoid layoffs of thousands of forced layoffs in Germany due to the Coronavirus pandemic, the German Metalworkers Union said today.
Airbus had previously announced plans to cut about 5,100 jobs in Europe’s largest economy.
But the deal means that no one will be forced to leave the company until the end of 2023.
Instead, the cuts will be achieved through voluntary layoffs and reduced working hours, the federation said.
“The threatening layoffs are no longer on the table,” said Daniel Friedrich, regional director of regional company IG Metall, in a statement.
He added that “months-long negotiations” ended with a decision in favor of “smart solutions instead of layoffs.”
The negotiated solution relies on a combination of voluntary layoffs, relocation of workers, and reduced working hours.
It includes an extension of the shorter leave scheme until the end of 2021.
“The decision by Airbus management to exclude forced layoffs is a great relief for all of us,” said Holger Jung, Chairman of the Airbus Workers Council.
Speaking at a press conference on Thursday, Junji indicated that jobs have been saved despite the “massive” economic blow to Airbus last year.
Airbus and the aviation sector as a whole have been hit hard by the coronavirus crisis and the resulting collapse in air travel, with a net loss of € 1.1 billion in 2020.
At the end of June, the company said it planned to cut about 15,000 jobs worldwide – 11% of its total workforce.
Publications to be released included 5,100 of the 55,000 in Germany.
The company said the cuts were in response to the pandemic, which had caused the “most severe crisis” the industry had ever seen.