Qantas job cuts may ‘wipe out’ an entire airport
Queensland is tipped to escape the brunt of Qantas's job cuts however hundreds of staff are expected to be out of work.
The Courier-Mail understands between 300 and 400 of Qantas's international crew at Brisbane Airport face the axe, however that number could climb higher.
However Cairns, which is the only other Queensland airport where Qantas uses its own ground crew, will be "wiped out" by its decision.
It comes as Qantas cuts another 2500 jobs nationwide as it outsources its ground handling operations - a move that will save the airline $100 million a year.
Early estimates by union officials suggest between 60 and 90 jobs will go.
Redundant staff are expected to be forced to reapply for their jobs at foreign-owned airport operations company Swissport.
Qantas and Jetstar directly employ people in various ground operations roles - which includes baggage handling and aircraft cleaning - at 11 large airports around the country.
They also use specialist ground handlers at airports at 55 other airports they fly to across Australia.
"This is the greatest challenge the aviation industry has ever faced and airlines have to change how they operate to ensure they can survive long-term," Qantas CEO Andrew David said in a statement.
He added: "We know travel restrictions will lift eventually, but the market will be very different. Every airline will come through this much leaner and more efficient, and we have to be able to compete if we're going to survive.
"Outsourcing this work to specialist ground handlers would save an estimated $100 million in operating costs each year."
Jetstar CEO Gareth Evans said contracting the work out reduces the capital spend required each year.
"As an example, Qantas and Jetstar would need to invest a further $100 million on ground handling equipment over the next five years, such as tugs and bag loaders, if the work is kept in-house," he said.
Originally published as Qantas job cuts to 'wipe out' Queensland airport