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Staff at KLM UK Engineering in Norwich apply for voluntary redundancy after news of job cuts

PUBLISHED: 17:34 29 March 2016 | UPDATED: 17:34 29 March 2016

KLM UK Engineering at Norwich Airport.
Picture by SIMON FINLAY.

KLM UK Engineering at Norwich Airport. Picture by SIMON FINLAY.

About two dozen staff at KLM UK Engineering have applied for voluntary redundancy after it emerged 40 jobs are at risk at the company, according to a union spokesman.

Talks are ongoing with staff and union reps at the aircraft maintenance firm, based at Norwich International Airport on Liberator Road, which employs 430 people.

The company refused to comment on the threat of redundancies, but Unite the Union has confirmed 40 full-time positions are at risk, with around 24 staff already opting for voluntary redundancy.

A consultation is ongoing over the remaining 16 positions, and the union expects further discussions to be held around shift patterns.

Steve Harley, regional officer for Unite the Union, said an “increased demand” on services during the winter and autumn had forced an “economical restructuring” in the business.

“There is an increasing demand for airlines to keep their fleet up in the air during the summer months, and based on that they are extremely busy in the spring, autumn and winter, with very little work in the summer,” he said. “Based on that the company has determined it needs some redundancies to bring the workforce in line with the demand.”

KLM UK Engineering, a subsidiary of KLM Royal Dutch Airlines, dipped into the red in 2014 after struggling market prices and light workloads dealt a blow to its performance.

The firm saw pre-tax profits fall from £6,497 to a £1m loss for the year ending December 31 2014, as it battled a slowdown in work during the summer of 2014.

According to its latest accounts filed at Companies House, turnover fell from £32.4m to £31.5m to the end of December 2014. But the aeroplane maintenance firm said it was continuing to see a growing demand for aircraft checks for Boeing 737 and Next Generation fleets, while plans to capture more work for the Airbus A320 were gaining traction.

Do you know more about this story? Call Sabah Meddings on 01603 772879 or email sabah.meddings@archant.co.uk

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