Jan 31, 2017: Air France may trim its workforce yet again as part of its “Trust Together” business plan unveiled by Air France-KLM Royal Dutch Airlines chief executive Jean-Marc Janaillac in November last year.

According to media reports, the French carrier aims to cut its permanent workforce from 40,100 full-time employees (FTE) in late 2017 to 39,500 by the end of 2019. There was no mention made of whether the lay-offs will come through natural attrition or other.

The cuts, which will primarily affect the Paris region and Corsica, will see ground handling staff FTEs cut from 25,200 to 24,750 with those in warehousing and trucking the most affected. Cabin crew FTEs will also be reduced from 11,400 to 11,150 over the ensuing three years.

On the contrary, hirings are planned for the MRO and IT departments as well as flight crew. At the heart of management's current labour negotiations is the finalization of work conditions and remuneration packages for pilots set to work for its Boost (Paris CDG) low-cost long-haul virtual carrier. Here, the number of FTE pilots could increase from 3,500 as of late 2017, to 3,600 by the end of 2019.

On Boost's unveiling last year, management said Boost would be manned by "volunteer" Air France flight- and cabin-crews all of whom would work under what it termed "cost-effective" employment conditions.

Overall, the French carrier plans to use Boost to attain profitable annual growth of between 2 per cent and 3 per cent through to 2020.

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