Lufthansa accelerates regional jet disposal

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Lufthansa partners Eurowings and CityLine are to accelerate the disposal of their 50-70 seat aircraft as the carriers take delivery of larger Embraer and Bombardier CRJs.

The increased pace of aircraft disposal will mean a total of 45 CRJ-200 and ATR 42-200s disappearing from both airlines' fleets, although the breakdown by aircraft type and removal dates have not yet been detailed.

"The new decision is we will step out of this [50-70 seat] segment faster than planned," says a Lufthansa spokeswoman. "At the beginning of 2009, we had 45 aircraft in this segment and we will successively reduce the number to zero.

"CityLine is receiving 20 Embraer 190s and Eurowings 15 CRJ900s. It is a decision to step out of this smaller segment as [the aircraft] are not operating on an economical scale."

Lufthansa will also reduce its full-time equivalent head count by 270 at group level. The job reduction, which will initially proceed on a voluntary basis, complements a previously-announced reduction of 400 full-time equivalent staff in Lufthansa's passenger business division.

The 270 job cuts will see 90 staff per year leave between 2010 and 2012.

"We are initially looking for voluntary redundancies," adds the spokeswoman. "But there are no concrete measures named about how we are going to achieve that."