A US aerospace giant with 1,000 Scots workers is reviewing global workforce numbers after coronavirus hit the aviation industry.
Spirit Aerosystems has laid off around 1,450 workers at its main operation in Wichita, Kansas, as the demand for new commercial aircraft continues to fall.
Spirit is a major employer at Prestwick and has invested heavily in its operation there – including a new £22m factory manufacturing aircraft parts, which was opened by First Minister Nicola Sturgeon in February. The firm has received millions of pounds from Scottish Enterprise.
The company said no decisions about staffing levels at the Prestwick operation had been made but could give no date on when there might be any news.
The majority of staff at Prestwick have been on furlough as a result of the coronavirus crisis. There have been a few key workers on-site, as well as a crew working to manufacture PPE.
A spokesman for the company said the Prestwick workforce was “expected to return at the beginning of June”.
However, asked if a review on worker numbers had been carried out and if there would be any job losses, he said: “I don’t believe any decisions have yet been made.”
Spirit is a supplier to aircraft makers Airbus and Boeing, both of which have been badly affected by the impact of Covid-19. Both have lowered production rates.
Spirit’s Prestwick operation builds the wing components for Airbus’s A320 aircraft.
The new plant it opened in February created more than 100 jobs and was heralded as helping to secure the long-term future of aerospace production in the area.
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