German Giant May Wield Axe

Germany's national carrier Deutsche Telekom AG (NYSE: DT) is preparing to cut up to 20,000 jobs in the next three years, according to various German media outlets.

According to press agency Deutsche Presse-Agentur, the operator's board decided last week to cut 10,000 jobs over the next two years, with 6,000 of the redundancies hitting the carrier's fixed-line division, T-Com.

But the Financial Times Deutschland claims the carrier will cut 10,000 jobs in 2006 and the same again in 2007.

A Deutsche Telekom spokeswoman says the carrier is not commenting on the reports.

The carrier had 247,830 staff at the end of the second quarter this year, nearly 126,000 of whom work at T-Com.

The operator's share price closed Tuesday at $21.92, down just 2 cents.

Deutsche Telekom is not the only European incumbent reducing its operational expenses by cutting jobs. BT Group plc (NYSE: BT; London: BTA) is reducing its staffing levels by between 4,000 and 5,000 per year (see BT Moves Ahead With Mega Project), while France Telecom SA (NYSE: FTE) cut 14,500 jobs this year (see France Telecom Cuts 7% of Staff).

— Ray Le Maistre, International News Editor, Light Reading

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