000_Hkg8929544Australia’s national carrier Qantas says it plans to cut 5,000 jobs from its 32,000-strong workforce as part of a tough restructuring move. Qantas Chief Executive Officer Alan Joyce announced the job cuts during a press conference on Thursday. “We are facing some of the toughest conditions Qantas has ever seen,” he said, adding, “Hard decisions will be necessary to overcome the challenges we face and build a stronger business.” The struggling airliner said it posted a first-half net loss of AUD 235 million (USD 210 million). The airliner, already battling fuel costs, is working to slash costs by nearly AUD 2 billion (USD 1.8 billion) over three years. Following a profit warning last December, credit rating agencies, Moody’s and S&P, both downgraded Qantas’ credit rating to junk status. Qantas has since been working on its finances to convince Canberra it deserves a debt guarantee. Press TV