British engine maker Rolls-Royce Group has announced plans to cut up to 2,300 jobs worldwide in response to rising costs.
It is getting more expensive to make engines because of higher prices for speciality metals such as titanium, cobalt and nickel and the effect of a weak dollar. As a result Rolls-Royce’s profits have fallen substantially.
Managerial, professional and clerical staff will lose their jobs in the restructuring, but not engineers. The cuts represent about 6% of the 39,500 workforce. In the UK, the company employs 23,300 people, in North America 8,300, Germany has 2,300, there are 3,400 in the Nordic countries and 2,200 elsewhere in the world.
Rolls Royce is also opening new plants in the US and Singapore, partly to help with the weak dollar problem. The company said the restructuring is designed to “create a leaner and more agile support structure better suited to the global markets in which it operates.”
In Britain, the Unite trade union said it was disappointed about the job cuts given the firm’s healthy order book for aircraft engines as well as gas turbines for ships and power generators.