'Relief' for workers as Airbus announces there are to be no compulsory redundancies at its Broughton plant

Workers at Airbus' Broughton site had faced redundancies as the Welsh aviation sector continued to take a hit from the coronavirus crisis Credit: PA Images

Airbus have announced there will be no compulsory redundancies at its site in Broughton.

Last year the aerospace firm cut 1,435 jobs at the plant, citing the financial impact from the coronavirus crisis, with a further 400 roles at risk of compulsory redundancy according to reports in November.

In a bid to save jobs, thousands of workers recently voted overwhelmingly in favour of a shorting worker week.

Trade union Unite welcomed the news, saying it came as a huge relief to its members at the plant.

Peter Hughes, Unite Wales regional secretary, said: "For our members at Airbus Broughton this is great news following a turbulent year that has seen the plant rocked by the effects of COVID-19.

"The Welsh aerospace sector has been under immense pressure due to the decline in aircraft orders resulting from the pandemic.

"The workforce has remained strong and united and today's news is hopefully the first sign that the plant is on the road to recovery".

Workers at the Broughton facility recently voted to a shorter worker week in a move designed to save jobs Credit: PA Images

Wales' aerospace and aviation sectors have been badly affected by the coronavirus crisis and the sharp drop in air passenger travel since the pandemic began.

Earlier this week the Welsh Government provided more than £80m to the taxpayer-owned Cardiff Airport, in the way of a grant and writing off £42.6m of its debt.

Ken Skates, the Economy Minister, said the move made economic sense and that delay would have risked "the loss of the airport."

However, opposition parties questioned whether the large investment was the most effective use of Government funding.

Russell George, the Conservative MS for Montgomeryshire, said small businesses may wonder if the Welsh Government had got the balance correct.

Ken Skates, the Minister for Economy, Transport and North Wales, responded by saying that the airport supported thousands of jobs in the sector and across the wider supply chain.

Doubts have been cast over a return to international travel this summer.

Health Minister Vaughan Gething said the data and advice he had been receiving did not suggest there would be any return to air passenger travel in the short term.

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson has recently said he thinks flights in and out of the UK could be up and running again by May 17 at the earliest.

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