AT&T will cut workforce in Slovakia, unions expect 300 jobs to be eliminated

PRAGUE (Reuters) – AT&T plans to reduce its workforce in Slovakia as the COVID-19 pandemic affects customer demand, the company said on Monday, with unions saying 10 percent of jobs could be affected.

AT&T Global Network Services Slovakia has been operating in the Central European country for over a decade, providing customer support, network engineering and other services.

The US firm employs around 2,800 people in the country of 5.5 million, where unemployment has risen to 7.4%, from 5.2%, since the global coronavirus pandemic hit in March.

AT&T said in a statement that it was working to “manage the impact on our people” from the cuts, which were part of previously announced initiatives and not just because of the crisis.

“These actions are in line with our focus on growth areas along with lower customer demand for certain legacy products and the economic impact and changed behaviors of from the COVID-19 pandemic, “a spokesperson said in an email.

Martin Horkavy, president of the uniJA union, which represents AT&T workers, told Reuters that about 300 jobs could be affected, based on discussions with employees.

AT&T has not confirmed the number of layoffs.

Reporting by Robert Muller; Editing by Alexander Smith