France Telecom Drops 2000 UK Workers.

Orange, the mobile phone company owned by France Telecom SA, will slash between 1,800 and 2,000 jobs in the UK in an effort to cut costs by 15 pct.

The redundancies stem from last year’s decision to merge Orange with internet arm Wanadoo, which together employ 12,000 people in the UK, said a spokesman for Orange UK.

He said it was too early to say which departments and offices would be hardest hit, but insisted that the job cuts would be pushed through by September.

Further redundancies would come from the merger of Wanadoo and Orange in the Netherlands, added the spokesperson.

Faced with a unrelenting decline in its traditional voice business, France Telecom in February said it would reduce headcount by 17,000 by 2008, mostly at its domestic operation.

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