Unite, the UK’s largest union in the country, is demanding an urgent meeting with BAE Systems, EADS and government ministers’ Vince Cable and Philip Hammond following today's (Wednesday 12 September) shock announcement that the two companies are in talks over a possible merger.
Commenting on the announcement Unite national officer Ian Waddell said: “Today's news has come totally out of the blue for the workforce and our first priority will be to safeguard jobs and skills. Any merger will need political approval in Europe and the US. Questions need to be asked about when the UK government knew about this and what it will do to safeguard jobs.
"We will be seeking an urgent meeting with Vince Cable and Philip Hammond and demanding guarantees from the company that a merger will not result in slashing jobs to cut costs. The new company would be the largest manufacturing company in the UK, employing tens of thousands of people in critical defence manufacturing and at Airbus. It is vital that the government ensures these jobs are protected in the UK before approving the merger."
For further information please contact Alex Flynn 07967665869.
Notes to editors:
Unite is Britain and Ireland’s largest trade union with 1.5 million members working in all sectors of the economy. The general secretary is Len McCluskey.