GE to Cut, and Create, Jobs in Europe
Last September, the European Union approved General Electric‘s $14.1 billion takeover of the power and transmission division of French manufacturer Alstom, after the company committed to selling-off and reducing some operations to remain competitive.
The first move in the Connecticut-based multi-national’s plans took form recently with the announcement that it will cut more than 6,500 jobs from its European operations, including about 750 jobs at Alcatel and more than 1,000 cuts in both Germany and Switzerland, primarily in human resources, communications and other support functions.
The EU Commissioner said that the terms of the deal protected Alstom’s heavy duty gas turbines business, which she said is vital for the modernization of Europe’s energy supply with clean technology.
The French government signed off on the GE-Alstom deal in part because GE pledged to create 1,000 jobs over the following three years. General Electric said that it would fulfill that promise by creating new positions elsewhere in the country.
The cuts are scheduled to take place over the next two years and are subject to revision based on discussions with union representatives, according to sources, with further reductions in GE’s workforce in the Americas, Asia and Africa likely as the company aims to save $3 billion within five years of the Alstom deal.
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