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Air France unions agree to voluntary departure plan

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

Unions at Air France approved Tuesday a voluntary departure plan for 1,826 ground staff as part of a wider restructuring to the loss-making airline.

Three unions representing a majority of employees concerned approved the plan, announced last month, after securing improvements to the compensation paid to those who choose to leave.

The company intends to shed a total of 2,800 jobs in the second part of its Transform 2015 plan to return the airline to profit by the end of next year.

The airline shed over 5,000 jobs in 2012 and 2013 in the first stage of the plan launched to come to grips with intensified competition posed from low-cost airlines.

Air France "is in the process of being saved," the head of Air France-KLM group Alexandre de Juniac said last month of the deep restructuring.

The company posted an operating loss of 451 million euros in the first half of the year, but in the third quarter posted an operating profit of 634 million euros, which de Juniac called "very encouraging".

Eligible ground employees taking voluntary departure before the end of March 2015 can get up to 36 months of payments worth up to 18,000 in total.

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http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/afp/131126/air-france-unions-agree-voluntary-departure-plan