3,500 more jobs to go at RBS
The government majority-owned Royal Bank of Scotland is planning to cut an additional 3,500 jobs from its UK divisions in technical services and back offices.
Nearly a third of the job redundancies are caused by RBS’ sale of its 318 branches to rival Santander, which will significantly reduce its interactions with customers and daily banking services. The Unite trade union, which represents the workers, said that the job cuts are a horror story for employees of the company.
Since RBS revealed its strategy last year to restructure and return to the private sector, a total of 27,000 jobs have been lost. It has been reported that eventually the number will total 30,000. According to the bank, cutting jobs was a difficult process, but that the bank needs to make efficiencies across the business and is required to make divestments by the European Union in order to return to privatisation.
After being bailed out by the UK government during the economic downturn last year, the bank was warned by the European Commission that it needed to sell of several branches in order to safeguard competition. Currently, the government still retains an 84 per cent stake in the business.
Rob MacGregor, Unite’s national officer, said that the cuts announced today will leave staff and employees of the bank reeling across the country. He also stated that the cuts will be difficult for workers to swallow. In 2011, the bank will close the following centres: Leeds, Bolton, Harrogate and Enfield. These will be followed by Bradford, Milton Keynes, Liverpool, Bristol, Borehamwood and Norwich in 2012. In addition to the job losses, 500 jobs will be relocated to centres in the Far East and India.
RBS posted staggering losses during 2008, promoting the UK government to step in after the group lost £24.1bn during one fiscal year. The amount lost was recorded as the largest yearly loss in UK corporate history. The bank, however, has since been returned to profit, during 2010 it has already made £1.14bn.