Page last updated at 16:11 GMT, Wednesday, 6 May 2009 17:11 UK

Jobs 'review' at Airbus factories

Airbus at Broughton
Workers' representatives remain "hopeful" following a management meeting

Airbus is reviewing staffing levels at its Flintshire plant, just weeks after the plane maker announced it was looking to cut 250 agency jobs there.

The latest review comes after the company revealed it will now deliver 14 of its A380 superjumbos in 2009, instead of the predicted 18.

Airbus said it needed to be "flexible" and work patterns at Broughton and Bristol were being examined.

A workers' spokesman said he was "hopeful" of avoiding redundancies.

The company is postponing delivery of four A380s until 2010, as a result of weaker demand amid the economic downturn.

It said current and future deliveries would depend on the demand from airline companies as well as the availability of credit.

Airbus confirmed it was now reviewing labour requirements at Broughton, as well as its plant at Filton in Bristol.

A spokesman said: "The effect of the revision in production rates needs to be fully assessed and the company will review the labour resource levels needed, going forward.

"We will communicate the outcome of this review in due course and these changes will also feature in on-going consultations which we are engaged in with employee representatives.

"The company is committed to retaining skills and safeguarding jobs, but this can only be achieved by working together to be more flexible and responsible and this may mean adapting established ways of working."

'Hopeful'

The Broughton plant, which helps make the wings for the A380, employs more than 6,000 people.

In March, the company said it was asking Blue Arrow Managed Services to reduce by approximately 250 the number of agency workers it provides to to Broughton.

Following a meeting with management on Wednesday, Charlie Gregory, chairman of the shop stewards' committee at Broughton, said he was "hopeful" further redundancies could be avoided.

He added: "We'll be having more talks with the company about flexible working."

Mr Gregory said it was reassuring that none of the production programmes for other Airbus models was being scaled back and overall wing manufacturing at Broughton this year would be higher than last year.

He said about 100 workers had volunteered to take redundancy in response to the earlier plans to cut 250 jobs.



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