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Dublin: 17 °C Sunday 9 August, 2020
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Bombardier reveals plans for 400 job losses at Belfast plant

The Canadian plane maker says Covid-19 has forced it to resize its business.

The Bombardier Aerospace plant in Belfast.
The Bombardier Aerospace plant in Belfast.
Image: Niall Carson

NORTHERN IRELAND’S LARGEST high-tech manufacturer Bombardier has announced that around 400 employees at its Belfast plant are at risk of redundancy.

The Canadian aircraft manufacturer says its adjusting its workforce in response to the impact that Covid-19 has had on the aviation industry.

The company currently employs around 3,500 people as part of its Northern Ireland operations, which produces wings for Airbus’s A220 aircraft. The redundancies are part of plans to cut its global workforce by 2,500, around 11%.

As well as the loss of 400 core jobs at the Belfast facility, it’s understood that 200 agency posts are also at risk. 

“We have now reviewed our requirements in Belfast for all of our aircraft programmes and regret to confirm that we must adjust our core workforce levels downwards by around 400 to align with market demand for the remainder of this year and through 2021,” the company said in a statement.

Bombardier confirmed that it will be lodging a formal redundancy notice with the UK Department for the Economy. It said that there will be a 90-day consultation period when it will explore opportunities to mitigate the number of redundancies.

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The Canadian firm said it “deeply regrets” the impact the decision will have on its workforce and their families, but added that it’s crucial that it resizes its business due to the “unprecedented circumstances”.

There have been mass layoffs at the company over the past five years, with thousands of jobs cut around the world in the aerospace and railway divisions.

Its operation in Northern Ireland is in the process of being sold to an American company.

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Ceimin Burke

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