Qantas expects a 60 per cent drop in labour demand at its heavy maintenance facilities in Australia over the next five years, the airline has said in comments that could pave the way for further job cuts.
Qantas last month announced plans to consolidate maintenance facilities in Brisbane, Melbourne and Avalon that together employ 1460 workers. At the same time, the airline announced 500 job cuts in maintenance and catering operations.
The release of the 60 per cent figure, in a report in The Australian, represents the first time Qantas has given a public hint as to how much it might further reduce its workforce. Qantas said the reduction in maintenance demand would result from more efficient maintenance systems and the replacement of ageing aircraft with new models that require less work.
The airline has also said it will not do heavy maintenance work on its Airbus A380s in Australia.
The Australian said the airline is considering several options, the most dramatic of which would be to close two of the three Australian facilities and consolidate all operations at the surviving plant.