Rolls-Royce will close its jet engine factories this summer for the first time in its history due to a lack of work, in an effort to contain heavy losses caused by the pandemic.
The FTSE 100 engineering firm is preparing to close plants for a fortnight, concentrated around its Derby headquarters. The measures will affect the 19,000 employees in Rolls’ international civil aerospace division, including 12,500 in the UK, who make aircraft engines, The Telegraph reported.
The dates of the shutdown have not yet been finalized, but it is in response to the collapse in demand for air travel caused by the coronavirus.
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Staff have been informed that the two weeks’ pay they will lose will be spread over the year to minimize the impact on their income. Rolls-Royce is expected to save tens of millions of pounds in wages, plus energy and other operating costs.
Company sources stressed that the closure is not due to the fact that
Rolls-Royce is about to liquidate its order book, but rather to save money by not working at low volumes, which would be uneconomical. Bosses are also starting talks with unions on how to achieve a 10 percent increase in productivity and efficiency.