Job cuts at airport tax-free shops

The Lagardère Travel Retail group that runs around 30 shops in Belgium, including 25 tax-free outlets at Brussels Airport at Zaventem (Flemish Brabant) and 2 shops at Charleroi Airport in Hainaut Province has announced that it is cutting its number of staff by almost a third. The news that 180 of the 550 jobs at Lagardère Travel Retail are to go comes from Renzo Guerriti of the socialist white collar union BBTK. Mr Guerriti broke the news after a meeting of the company’s Work’s Council. It is still unclear in which of the company’s shops jobs will go. 

Mr Guerriti told journalists that “The decision is due to a drastic reduction in the number of passengers. The company doesn’t expect the situation to return to normal until 2024”.

Talks on severance terms will commerce on 15 June. They will be held under the conditions of the so-called “Renault Law” on collective dismissal. The union says that during the talks they will try and save as many jobs as they possibly can.

Although they are "greatly shocked that 30% of staff are being shown the door”, the unions say that they understand why the decision has been taken. "Without passengers of course the shops at the airport can’t sell anything”, Mr Guerriti added.   

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