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Coronavirus Crisis: BP to trim workforce by 10,000 due to drop in oil demand

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BP will cut about 15% of its workforce in response to the coronavirus crisis and as part of Chief Executive Bernard Looney’s plan to shift the oil and gas major to renewable energy, it said on Monday.

Looney told employees in a global online call that the London-based company will cut 10,000 jobs from the current 70,100.

“We will now begin a process that will see close to 10,000 people leaving BP – most by the end of this year,” Looney said in a statement.

A news agency had earlier reported the planned job cuts, citing three company sources.

BP shares were up 3.3% by 1230 GMT, against a 2.2% gain for the broader European energy sector.

The affected roles will be mostly senior office-based positions and not front-line operational staff, the company said.

About a fifth of the job cuts will take place in Britain, where BP employs 15,000 people, a company spokesman said.

Like all the world’s top energy companies, BP has cut its 2020 spending plans after the coronavirus pandemic brought an unprecedented drop in demand for oil. BP has flagged a 25% cut to $12 billion this year and said it would find $2.5 billion in cost savings by the end of 2021 through the digitalisation and integration of its businesses.

On Monday, however, Looney said the company is likely to need to cut costs even further.

BP is giving no pay rises to senior employees until March 2021 and said it is unlikely to pay any cash bonuses this year.

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