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Boeing 737 MAX airplanes are stored on employee parking lots near Boeing Field, on June 27, 2019 in Seattle, Washington.

Boeing starts job cuts with 6,770 US layoffs

Boeing 737 MAX airplanes are stored on employee parking lots near Boeing Field, on June 27, 2019 in Seattle, Washington.

Boeing Co. unveiled the first of its planned job cuts, saying it would notify 6,770 employees in the US this week that their positions would be eliminated.

Cars sit parked in an employee parking lot at a Boeing facility in Everett, Washingtonn on April 20. (Photo: Chona Kasinger/Bloomberg)

The collapse in flying because of the coronavirus pandemic means less demand for jetliners, Chief Executive Officer Dave Calhoun said Wednesday in a message to employees. Workforce reductions overseas will be communicated separately.

Calhoun warned last month that Boeing would need to cut 10 per cent of its workforce — or about 16,000 jobs — to shrink operations as many of the company’s best airline customers are fighting for survival. Rival Airbus SE has also been contemplating steep job cuts after announcing plans to pare production by more than a third.

A Boeing aircraft. (Photo: Bloomberg)

“The COVID-19 pandemic’s devastating impact on the airline industry means a deep cut in the number of commercial jets and services our customers will need over the next few years, which in turn means fewer jobs on our lines and in our offices,” Calhoun told employees. “I wish there were some other way.”

Boeing fell less than one per cent to $143.89 at 11:25 a.m. in New York.