Today saw the announced restructuring of Australia’s national airline carrier, with Qantas CEO Alan Joyce making it known to the public that a massive 15% of his work-force were being laid off, in turn costing 5000 employee’s their jobs.
In an anxious day for the aviation industry, $252 million dollars was reported to have been lost in half-year figures by the airline, this comes after a tumultuous start to the year for the Australian jobs industry, with jobs from different professions slashed in a struggle. The year has seen 980 positions ripped away at the Alcoa milling plants, Toyota announcing to cease manufacturing cars in 2017 as well as an expected departure of 900 jobs to the already redundant Ford in June, just to name a few.
Qantas shares have receded more than 9%, leaving them at just $1.15 at market close, and in a very expected move, Prime Minister Tony Abbott indicated strongly that he would steer clear of supporting Qantas financially, stating in Question Time “The difficulty…is this; what we do for one business, in fairness, we have to make available to all businesses”.
Today’s press conference is a firm reminder of the stormy times ahead for the industry, with the lack of confidence in CEO Alan Jones rising to new heights.
Political backlash came in all forms, especially from Opposition Leader Bill Shorten, with the Labor leader fiercely asking “When will the government act?”. A tired looking Abbott retorted simply “We are determined to do what we can for Qantas, consistent with the responsible economic management”.