Air France-KLM CEO Alexandre de Juniac says the airline is gearing up for ''significant'' jobs cuts after productivity talks with pilots failed. As Kirsty Basset reports, Air France has already threatened to cut 10 percent of its long-haul network by 2017 unless pilots accepted significant cost cuts.
An uncertain weekend ahead for Air France staff, after the head of the parent company warned significant job cuts will be announced on Monday. Alexandre de Juniac spoke to Europe 1 radio. (SOUNDBITE) (French) AIR FRANCE-KLM CEO, ALEXANDRE DE JUNIAC, SAYING: "Unfortunately it's a significant job reduction plan. What we'll do, and what we've committed to doing, is partly to favour voluntary redundancies, which incidentally we've been doing for several years, which is recognised as being a method our employees accept, but when it's necessary we'll resort to forced redundancies." The announcement came after hours of talks and negotiations with the pilots union failed to reach an agreement on cost cuts and changes to working conditions. (SOUNDBITE) (French) AIR FRANCE-KLM CEO, ALEXANDRE DE JUNIAC, SAYING: "For the moment the negotiations are finished. Now they are finished. But if in the coming weeks the unions come to us with a real plan, and a real desire to negotiate, the door is not closed." CMC analyst Michael Hewson says one of the problems is the company's industrial relations practices are stuck in the past. (SOUNDBITE) (English) CMC MARKETS ANALYST MICHAEL HEWSON SAYING: "The share price over the past quarters speaks volumes. At the end of the day the airline is inefficient, their airline pilots get paid well over and above what other airline pilots get paid, the airline is loss making, they need to move into the 21st century." The airline warned on Thursday it would be cutting back on its operations in order to safeguard its future.