The former state telecoms operator filed for protection from its creditors in March to restructure 3.75 billion euros (3 billion pounds) of debt and was taken over by its senior lenders after cutting its debt by 40 percent.

Irish telco, Eircom has announced that it is slashing 2,000 of its 5,700 staff over the next 18 months. The company said that this will bring it in line with the European average for employees and operational costs when benchmarked on cost against its peers.

Other changes include further modernisation of work practices and closure of under used office locations across the country.

But eircom informed its current 5,700 employees on Wednesday that it would accelerate its cost-cutting programme, including the closure of offices, to bring operational costs in line with its European peers.

The drive to greater operational efficiency together with its strategic infrastructure investment underpin the Group’s strategy and five year business plan that will not only provide a new fibre broadband network to one million premises in Ireland, but will also transform eircom into a modern, competitive organisation.

Commenting on the announcement, Herb Hribar, eircom Group CEO said, “The challenges facing eircom are significant. They require a fundamental transformation in the way we are organised, the business activities we prioritise and the work practices we have adopted in order to substantially reduce our costs and become more efficient. The programme is ambitious but the challenges are not insurmountable. The business strategy remains sound and our strategic investment continues. Achieving these cost reductions is vital to providing the organisation with greater flexibility.”