London City Airport announced that it is cutting up to 239 jobs, which is over a third of its staff. The airport says that it is a part of crucial restructuring plans amid the coronavirus pandemic.
However, the airport is launching a consultation with staff to find ways of cost-cutting. This cost-cutting will include voluntary redundancy However, it will be a move through which the airport will cut 35 percent of jobs across its business.
The airport, which is located in east London’s Royal Docks, suspended commercial flights on 25 March. It had to take this action due to a significant fall in international travel.
Flights resumed from the site on 21 June but, like many other airports across the world, passenger numbers are well below 2019 levels. And they are expecting figures to continue the same through the winter season.
Mr. Sinclair said, “It is with huge regret that we are announcing this restructuring program today. And our thoughts are with all of our highly valued staff and their families.”
“The aviation sector is in the throes of the biggest downturn it has ever experienced as a result of the pandemic.”
In addition, he said, “We have held off looking at job losses for as long as possible. But sadly we are not immune from the devastating impact of this virus.”
The airport said in a statement that it is already not doing any nonessential spending. It includes a temporary pause to the airport’s £500 million development program. That includes a new terminal extension.
Cost Cutting Plans
However, in April to cut costs the airport’s top management cut their pay by 25 percent, whereas the CEO, Robert Sinclair, also took a 30 percent pay cut.
It is hoped that major projects already underway will continue as planned by the end of the year.
The airport’s focus in the coming weeks is now on helping staff through “this exceptionally difficult period”, said Mr. Sinclair.
“We are committed to playing our part in rebuilding a stronger local and national economy. Once the worst of the downturn passes and believes that the difficult decisions we are taking now will enable the airport to bounce back in better shape when growth returns,” he said.
Job Cuts in the Aviation Industry
At the beginning of this month, Virgin Atlantic also announced plans to cut 1,150 jobs. Even though the airlines received the approval of a £1.2 billion rescue deal.
By these job cuts there will be a reduction of one third in the airline’s workforce.
Moreover, British Airways has already cut more than 6,000 staff through voluntary redundancy. And mothballed its £200 million Heathrow base.
EasyJet has announced that it will close its bases at London Stansted, London Southend, and Newcastle airports from 1 September. As well as slashing 30 percent of jobs and Jet2 is making 102 pilots redundant.