Qantas cuts 5,000 jobs, posts AUD 235 mn loss in first half

Qantas cuts 5,000 jobs, posts AUD 235 mn loss in first half

Disclosing a AUD 235 million half- year loss, Australian national airlines Qantas today announced axing 5,000 jobs in a bid to cut costs.

According to media reports, Qantas Chief Executive Alan Joyce said the result was unacceptable and the company would slash 5,000 full-time equivalent positions.

"We have the only profitable carriers operating in the domestic operation today," he said.

"We haven't added as much capacity as our competitors have over the last few years, they're absolutely employing the position of adding capacity even though they are losing a significant amount of money and their strategy is loss-making," Joyce added.

Over the next three years, Qantas will be slashing 1,500 management and non-operational positions, he said.

The other shake-up would be seen in the fleet and network and the restructure of maintenance operations and catering facilities.

Employee wages would also be frozen and the company's executives had already taken a pay cut, reports said.

Joyce said the airlines suffered AUD 252 million underlying loss for the six months to December 31.

"There are many Australian companies that have failed because they were not prepared to make the hard decisions, Qantas is not one of them," he said.

"We will cut where we can in order to invest...we will be a far leaner Qantas group. Our priorities are to protect our core businesses...that is how we will protect as many jobs as possible and return to profitability," Joyce said adding that he would meet unions tomorrow to discuss the cuts. 

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