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Thursday, 15 June, 2000, 06:14 GMT 07:14 UK
BAe to cut shipyard jobs
BAe sign
Jobs going at Yarrows and the Govan yard
The UK's biggest defence contractor, BAe Systems, has announced plans to cut Scottish shipyard jobs in an effort to make savings.

The company, which announced that a total of 3,800 jobs would go across the United Kingdom, said there would be 500 losses shared between the Govan yard on the Clyde, the Yarrows yard in Scotstoun and the Barrow shipyard in England.

However, it has not yet specified how many white collar and shop floor staff would be affected at each yard.

Details of losses still to be clarified
In Edinburgh, one of the company's South Gyle plants has been earmarked for closure.

The workload at the facility - which produces cockpit displays and pilot helmet systems - would be transferred to other plants in the capital.

A spokesman said there would be no job losses among engineering staff but he could not rule out the possibility of redundancies among ancillary workers.

BAe Systems' decision follows a strategic review of the company after its merger with Marconi Electronics last year.

The company warned at the time of the 275m deal that savings would have to be made at its 60 sites in Britain.

It said it had identified significant duplication and overlapping in its business.

'Natural wastage'

The union convener at the Scotstoun yard on the Clyde said the workforce were waiting to see the detail of the jobs announcement.

John Doyle said: "The figure we have been told works out to 285 jobs over the three sites at Barrow, Govan and Scotstoun over 18 months.

"That could conceivably come through natural wastage so at the moment we are waiting to hear the detail.

"We do not know, and the company does not know, what level the jobs are to go at. It could be management, workforce, administration or a mixture of both.

Govan yard
Unions seeking to minimise impact
The GMB Scotland union said it expected 300 jobs to go at the Govan, Scotstoun and Barrow yards.

Senior Scottish organiser Jim Moohan said: "Obviously unions will be meeting with the company to attempt to minimise the impact of this decision, but it is extremely disappointing to see BAE Systems shedding jobs at a time when the shipyards are aiming for stability to secure work.

"While the job losses should not affect BAE Systems involvement in the bid for the MoD roll-on roll-off ferries, redundancies don't help the overall situation in the industry."

The biggest losses will be at Brough in Hull, where 850 jobs will go and at two sites near Preston - Warton and Samlesbury - where there will be 750 job losses.

The MSF union's general secretary, Roger Lyons, said: "MSF is shocked by the level of job cuts and will be campaigning to resist any compulsory redundancies.

"The union will seek talks with the DTi with a view to reducing the impact of the job cuts particularly in Brough and in Govan."

In Scotland, BAe Systems employs around 6,000 people at the Govan and Yarrows shipyards, the aircraft production line at Prestwick, the munitions complex at Bishopton and at various Marconi plants in Edinburgh.

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See also:

15 Jun 00 | Business
Job cuts at defence firm
01 Dec 99 | Business
BAe Systems to sack 1,500 managers
16 May 00 | Scotland
Defence deals raise job hopes
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