Lufthansa cargo to slash jobs, pilots vote to strike

LUFTHANSA Cargo has confirmed that it will cut its workforce by 10 per cent this year as part of its plan to cut costs by €1 billion ($1.38 billion) by the end of 2011. This comes hot on the heels of its previous announcement that its increase in traffic has allowed it to reduce the cut in hours for its German ground crew by five per cent.

Nils Haupt, Lufthansa cargo’s spokesperson, said: “We suffered steep losses in revenue and tonnage last year, the worst in the history of Lufthansa Cargo. When you see that kind of drop, capacity has to be adjusted accordingly.”

The carrier plans to remove 400 jobs worldwide through voluntary early retirement. This is despite Haupt admitting that the first five weeks of 2010 were “very good” for the company.

Lufthansa Cargo is planning on increasing prices 10 per cent on 1 March, on top of the 20 per cent increase last year.

Just today, Lufthansa’s pilots have voted to strike in a dispute over pay and job security.

“There has been no progress and no official negotiations,” Joerg Handwerg, a spokesman for the pilot’s union said. “Informal talks have only made clear that Lufthansa is seeking confrontation.”

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