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Potential job losses at one of Nantgarw’s Biggest Employers

Written by on 5th May 2020

A consultation on possible job losses at one of south Wales’ biggest employers has started after General Electric announced it will cut up to a quarter of its aviation business staff.

GE said it is consulting with the 1,400 people at its Nantgarw site as the firm suffers from the drop of numbers in air travel.

It said 13,000 of its 52,000 people worldwide workforce could be affected.

GE Aviation makes jet engines for Boeing and Airbus.

The company’s plans are the latest sign that the air travel industry is preparing for a prolonged travel slowdown due to the coronavirus pandemic.

According to the BBC, the firm had already announced a 10% cut to its US aviation workforce but it said “more is required”.

“The global impact of the coronavirus pandemic is being felt across the aviation industry,” a GE spokesperson told the BBC

“The business is consulting with all employees at the Wales site, including those currently furloughed, regarding voluntary severance. The total number of people affected will only be finalised through the consultation process which is currently underway.

“We appreciate the commitment of all our employees during this difficult time, and we regret having to take this action.

“Throughout this time, we remain focussed on protecting the safety of our employees, continuing to serve our customers, and preserving our capability to respond as the industry recovers.”

Manufacturing giant Boeing, as well as airlines such as British Airways, have also announced significant cuts.

Boeing last week said it planned to reduce its global workforce by 10% or 16,000 jobs, while British Airways’ parent company IAG said it would slash 12,000 positions.

Drop in air travel

The news comes three years after the site won a £20m contract to maintain and repair the world’s largest and most fuel efficient jet engine, the GE9X.

Engines from iconic aircrafts such as Concorde have been overhauled at the huge Nantgarw plant, which celebrates its 80th anniversary this year.

The potential 13,000 job cuts at GE Aviation, which employs about 52,000 people in 19 countries worldwide, comes shortly after the unit revealed profits had fallen roughly 40% in the three months to March.