800 more telecoms jobs to be cut in Greece

Greece’s Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras has failed to impress creditors with his newest reform plan making Greece’s exit from the Eurozone a possibility. More bad news for the country came as job cuts were announced in the telecoms sector.

OTE Chief Executive Michael Tsamaz announced the latest round of job cuts on Tuesday. Most of the jobs will go in voluntary redundancies costing the company around 110 million Euros. The company have already cut 3,300 jobs in similar schemes since 2012.

OTE which is 40% owned by Germany’s Deutsche Telecom blame the job losses on the deepening financial crisis in Greece along with strong competition. Greece has until the end of this month to reach cash for reforms deal with its creditors to whom Greece owes 240 billion Euros, or it may be forced to leave the EU in what has been termed the Grexit

OTE provide fixed and mobile telephone services in Greece along with broadband and satellite communications. OTE was a state owned monopoly until 1996. The company also operate in Romania and Albania as well as Greece employing over 20,000 staff overall. The telecoms job cuts in Greece will hit hard in the country with an unemployment rate standing at 25.6% and 1.2 million Greeks being jobless. 50% of 15-24 year olds in Greece are unemployed

OTE has been hit by several scandals in the past, including accusations in 2008 of accepting bribes from Siemens to grant a multi-million Dollar contract for the Olympic Games in Athens in 2004. In 2011 Comverse technology admitted paying bribes totalling $536,000 to OTE.