Aerospace manufacturing giant Boeing (NYSE:BA) announced Thursday that it will cut 160 jobs and reduce facilities at its El Paso, Texas, plant.

The reductions come with defense budget cuts planned for the United States, as well as an eye toward improving Boeing's competitiveness, according to the company. The job cuts amount to more than 40% of the Boeing workers at the site.

The cuts, which Boeing says will be completed by the end of 2014, will reduce facility square footage in the El Paso plant by 50% and move operations from three buildings into one. Currently, the El Paso plant makes electronics for defense purposes. Boeing says budget cuts will reduce demand for such products.

"We recognize this will affect the lives of many of the highly skilled men and women who work here, so we will do everything possible to assist our employees, their families and our community through this difficult time." Boeing Network Operations Director Derek McLuckey is quoted as saying in a company press relasee.

The job cuts are the latest move after the aerospace titan announced in 2010 that its defense division would cut 30% of management jobs, as well as restructure and consolidate business units and facilities.

Shares of Boeing have struggled recently due to highly publicized problems with its 787 Dreamliner aircraft.


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