WICHITA, Kan. (KWCH) – Spirit AeroSystems on Friday announced plans to lay off 1,100 employees who work on commercial programs to “support the alignment of workforce levels with customer demand for aircraft.” The measure includes 450 additional employees in Wichita.
Spirit said the move was directly linked to the reduction in the production rate of the 737 MAX, the third this year, and the ongoing pandemic “which continues to impact the demand for new commercial aircraft and the airline industry as a whole. “
The manufacturer said production has been reduced from 125 units to 72 units for 2020, a reduction of more than 80% from its 2019 production rates.
“Our production rates for commercial aircraft have gone from historic levels to significantly lower volumes in a matter of months,” said Tom Gentile, President and CEO of Spirit AeroSystems. “We are taking this action to better adapt our level of employment to the reduced demand that we are seeing from our customers. This action, along with previous actions, is aimed at reducing costs, increasing liquidity and positioning Spirit to remain financially healthy as we go through a period of recovery in the commercial aviation market.
“While this extraordinary time has forced us to make some tough decisions, we remain focused on meeting the demands of our customers, including the important work we provide for defense and space programs,” said Gentile. “I remain confident in the future of the aviation industry and in our ability to overcome these challenges to become a stronger company.”
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