Alitalia calls board meeting, may discuss job cuts

Mon Nov 11, 2013 3:03pm EST
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MILAN (Reuters) - Italian airline Alitalia has called a board meeting for Wednesday to discuss a revised industrial plan for the loss-making carrier that could include heavy job losses, sources familiar with the situation said on Monday.

One source said a few thousand jobs could be cut as a result of the revised plan, although there was no definite number given that any proposal would need to secure a number of approvals, including that of trade unions.

Labor representatives said last week they were not prepared to accept any job losses at the airline.

The chief executive of UniCredit (CRDI.MI: Quote), one of Alitalia's key lenders, confirmed on Monday that Alitalia's management was reviewing the company's industrial plan last approved in July, but did not give any details.

Alitalia confirmed Wednesday's meeting, but declined to comment on its agenda, the industrial plan or whether any cuts at the carrier would be discussed.

Italian media said on Monday that Alitalia's Chief Executive Gabriele del Torchio was planning to cut up to 4,000 jobs, including all fixed-term contracts, in the revised plan.

Other proposals included cutting the salaries of pilots and flight attendants, newspapers said, adding that all the measures would generate savings of up to 400 million euros.

One source said there were agreements with unions already in place that would allow for job cuts of up to 2,000.

However, union officials denied that, saying any agreements for job cuts or state-backed temporary layoff schemes currently in place were already being used.   Continued...

Scale models of Alitalia airplanes are displayed at a shop selling models of vehicles in Rome October 31, 2013. REUTERS/Alessandro Bianchi