Financial News

  • 28 February 2014, 4:22

Qantas To Axe 5,000 Jobs After 126m Loss

Australian airline Qantas has announced it will cut 5,000 jobs after posting a first-half net loss of 126m.

The airline, which is battling record fuel costs and fierce competition from subsidised rivals, is working to slash costs by 1.08bn over three years.

Part of the restructuring programme will see 5,000 full-time positions lost from its 32,000-strong workforce.

A wage freeze will also be applied across the whole company until the airline returns to a profit.

The airline also highlighted "significant changes" to its fleet plans and network and a reduction in capital expenditure of 500m over the next two financial years.

Chief executive Alan Joyce said: "We are facing some of the toughest conditions Qantas has ever seen.

"Hard decisions will be necessary to overcome the challenges we face and build a stronger business."

He added the Australia had been "hit by a giant wave of international airline capacity", with a 46% increase in competitor capacity since 2009.

Following a profit warning in December, ratings agencies Moody's and Standard & Poor's downgraded Qantas' credit rating to "junk" status, increasing the cost of financing for the airline.

Qantas has since been working on its finances to convince the government it deserves a debt guarantee and also lobbying the Australian government to relax the Qantas Sales Act, which limits foreign ownership in the airline to 49%.

The loss for the six months through December 2013 followed a 68m profit for the same period in 2012.

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