Economy

Aircraft engine builder Rolls-Royce fires 1 in 5 employees

Of the 52,000 employees who work at Rolls-Royce worldwide, at least nine thousand lose their jobs. The group also wants to save costs, including by investing less.

In total, it wants to cut more than 1.3 billion pounds (about 1.5 billion euros). Cutting the workforce should save £ 700 million.

Biggest layoff in 30 years

It is the largest round of layoffs at Rolls-Royce in 30 years. About two thirds of the workers are in the United Kingdom.

The aircraft engine manufacturer should not be confused with the manufacturer of very luxurious cars of the same name. That company is part of the German BMW.

Fewer flights

The pain is mainly with the part that makes engines for civil aviation. Because of the coronavirus and the locking of many economies, there is considerably less flying.

For example, Air France-KLM says it will use the aircraft capacity for only 5 percent in the second quarter and only about 20 percent in the third quarter.

Fewer planes needed

Airline companies cancel or postpone orders for airplanes. As a result, fewer aircraft engines are required. Rolls-Royce thinks it will take several years for the market to return to the level of a few months ago.

The practice of the other major branch, that of engines for military aircraft, is described as ‘robust’. No people need to be fired there.

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