Boeing plans to temporarily suspend 10% of workers in its civil aviation unit to reduce cost as aviation is among the worst-affected sectors amidst the COVID-19 crisis. According to sources, the layoff would impact the unit manufacturing the troubled 737 Max which has been inactive for more than a year.
More than 160,000 people work worldwide in Boeing, including 70,000 in Washington state, where most of its civilian aircraft are assembled. The plant in South Carolina produces only part of the 787. The job cuts may affect upto 7,000 workers.
The news comes just a day after the company slowly resumed production at its Puget Sound facility in Washington. New measures were taken to keep workers six-feet apart along with health checks and hand – washington stations.
David Calhoun, the Chief Executive wants to resolve the downsizing plan before Boeing embarks on the complex . The sources said, there may be sensitive negotiations with the US Treasury to win in federal support for Boeing.
Amid the heavy hit to the aviation industry from the COVID-19 crisis, Boeing has sought US$60 billion in public assistance for the US aerospace industry. In late March a huge amount of (around US$17 billion) federal relief was approved for Boeing.
The company is already under pressure due to the controversy regarding the top-selling 737 MAX and there is no confirmation over when the plane will get back to action.