GENERAL Electric in Nantgarw is to cut 369 jobs at its aircraft engine maintenance plant.
The company has been consulting with 1,400 staff as the firm suffers from a drop of numbers in air travel. The announcement comes on top of 180 posts already lost at the site through voluntary redundancies.
General Electric, which makes jet engines for Boeing and Airbus, blamed the “unprecedented impact of Covid-19” but that it remained focused on “preserving our capability to respond as the industry recovers”.
Ken Skates, the Welsh economy minister said:
“We have already called for measures to be taken and I am repeating that once again today. Without action from the UK government, the future of the aerospace sector is at serious risk,”
“Other central governments have moved rapidly to protect their industries, the UK government must do the same to safeguard a sector which is vital to our economy.”
The local Labour MP Alex Davies-Jones and the Senedd member Mick Antoniw said it was an “absolutely devastating” news. Adding that the “The UK aerospace industry is in crisis and it is not acceptable for the UK government to simply sit back and shrug its shoulders. We will continue to work with Unite the union and GE management locally”
“These are highly-skilled, highly-paid jobs and will be extremely difficult to replace,” they added.
Peter Hughes, the regional secretary for Unite Wales said “this is further devastating news for Welsh workers, Welsh manufacturing and the Welsh economy,”
“Our members at GE and their families will be extremely worried about their futures today” adding that the planned job losses should be paused so that the company can “work with us to seek an urgent UK government sector deal for aerospace that could save these jobs”
Russell George, the Senedd Conservative’s business spokesperson said, that his party would do “all we can” including working cross-party with the Welsh Government.
Plaid Cymru’s Delyth Jewell MS commented:
“I fear that this is just the tip of the iceberg, we will see with job losses over the coming weeks and months, which is why I urge the Welsh Government to heed Plaid Cymru’s call for an All-Wales Renewal Fund to help boost sectors that are hardest hit by the crisis,” and investing in the “green economy”.