Page last updated at 17:10 GMT, Thursday, 28 January 2010

AstraZeneca set to cut 8,000 jobs

Generic pills
AstraZeneca is one of the world's largest pharmaceutical firms

Pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca is to cut a further 8,000 jobs across its worldwide operations.

The workforce reduction is in addition to the 12,600 global positions that have already been trimmed under the firm's continuing cost-cutting plans.

The UK group said the latest round of job cuts would be implemented over the next four years.

An AstraZeneca spokeswoman said the company had yet to reveal how many UK positions would be affected.

The latest global cuts are to take place across the firm's sales and marketing, business infrastructure, research and development (R&D), and supply chain operations.

The company also said that some R&D sites may close.

AstraZeneca is seeking to achieve cost savings of about £1.1bn ($1.8bn) by 2014.

The job cuts announcement came as AstraZeneca reported an annual pre-tax profit of £6.7bn for 2009, up 24% from 2008. Annual revenues were up 7% to £20.2bn.

Shares in AstraZeneca fell 4.6% to £29.05.

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