Business

Boeing to cut more than 4,500 jobs to reduce costs

Three Boeing 737-800 fuselages sit in production at the Boeing Wichita plant Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Boeing's customers are demanding more fuel-efficient and technologically-advanced planes

The world's largest plane manufacturer Boeing plans to cut more than 4,500 jobs by the middle of the year to reduce costs.

A company spokesman said about 1,600 positions will go through voluntary redundancies while the rest will take place through attrition.

Most redundancies are set to come from its commercial aircraft division as customers cut back on orders.

Hundreds of executives and managers are also expected to lose their jobs.

A spokesperson from Boeing said Boeing promised only to use "involuntary layoffs" as a last resort: "Staffing reductions through mid-year, including hundreds of executives and managers, are projected to total approximately 4,000 positions - none of which involve involuntary layoffs."

The cuts account for almost 3% of Boeing's workforce, which comprised 161,000 people at the end of last year.

Boeing is reacting to concern that demand for its jets is slowing.

The US company has also been losing market share to rival Airbus Group SE.

Boeing delivered a record 762 planes last year, exceeding its previous forecast. However, last year saw a big fall in new orders.

Customers in the Middle East and Asia, who had been on a spending spree, have been cutting back.

As of 31 December, Boeing's backlog of orders stood at 5,795, representing more than seven and a half years of production at the current rate.

With Boeing and Airbus factories running at full capacity, airlines have been reluctant to spend billions of dollars on aircraft that they would not receive for several years.

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