By PAUL WILENIUS Industrial Reporter
MORE THAN 1,000 white collar jobs at the Austin Rover car giant will be axed as part of a “major streamlining exercise.” The job losses will be across the board at plants in Longbridge, Birmingham; Cowley, Oxford, Canley, Coventry, Drews Lane, Llanelli, and Swindon.
Last night the company said the cuts were not due to a fall in sales. Although home sales have been dropping, exports are booming.
The axe is not expected to fall on any shop floor workers, but their union leaders joined white-collar representatives yesterday at a meeting with Austin Rover chiefs at the company ‘s management training centre at Haseley Manor, in Warwickshire.
Most of the clerical jobs will be lost through natural wastage and early retirement.
The new chairman of Austin Rover, Graham Day, is very keen on improving the efficiency of the company. A cut in the 10,500 white – collar workforce fits in with his aim to increase productivity and reduce losses. The Government is still considering the Rover group’s latest corporate plan, put forward by Mr Day.