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BBC News to cut 400 jobs in austerity drive

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Published : 2014-07-20 21:14
Updated : 2014-07-20 21:14

LONDON (AFP) ― The BBC said on Thursday that it will cut 415 jobs from its news department in the latest cost-cutting measures by the world’s largest public broadcaster.

Director of news James Harding said the cuts were part of savings needed as a result of a freeze in the license fee, which all British households with a television must pay.

The cuts will save 48 million pounds ($82 million) a year over the next two years and are part of a total of 800 million pounds in savings that began in 2010.

The British Broadcasting Corporation would restructure its news operations while increasing its investment in digital journalism, Harding said.

“It will be a testing time of uncertainty and change,” Harding was quoted by the BBC as telling staff in a briefing at its headquarters in London.

“The challenge is how to make BBC News even better, despite having less money.”

But he said the BBC would create 195 new posts in the news division as part of a restructuring plan, meaning an overall reduction of 220 full-time jobs.

Harding joined the BBC last August, having previously edited The Times newspaper, owned by media mogul Rupert Murdoch’s News U.K.