Dhaka: Over 6,000 workers in the United Kingdom and France has been placed on government-funded furlough programmes by the European multinational aerospace corporation Airbus just days after reportedly warning employees that it was burning cash at a rate that could threaten the company's survival.
The European plane maker said in a statement on April 27 that it has agreed with unions to furlough 3,200 production workers at its manufacturing site in Broughton, Wales. The UK government will pay 80 per cent of their salaries, up to a maximum of USD 3,100 per month, under its job retention programme.
A similar step has been taken in France, where some 3,000 posts have been furloughed, Airbus said.
Guillaume Faury, CEO of Airbus reportedly told employees in an internal letter on April 24 that Airbus was "bleeding cash at an unprecedented rate, which may threaten the very existence of our company."
"We must now act urgently to reduce our cash-out, restore our financial balance and, ultimately, to regain control of our destiny," Faury wrote, according to reports.
Airbus cut production by one third earlier this month, as airlines scaled back orders for new planes due to the coronavirus pandemic. Flight bans and nationwide lockdowns are threatening to bankrupt airlines around the world, with some already buckling under the financial strain.
Carriers around the world face a "mounting financial crisis" and could lose as much as USD 314 billion in revenue this year, according to the International Air Transport Association. The collapse in air traffic puts around 6.7 million jobs at risk in Europe, IATA said in a statement last week, calling for urgent government action to "preserve air services".