As many as 100 jobs could be lost across Fujitsu’s operations in Northern Ireland as the company announced plans to cut its UK workforce by up to 1,800 people in 2017.
The Japanese multinational IT equipment and services company said it was beginning consultations with staff in a bid to streamline operations to remain competitive.
It presently employs 450 in Belfast and a further 250 in Londonderry.
With the total workforce of 14,000 across the country, that represents under 10% of the total which transaletd to the province suggests under 100 posts could go.
However, a spokesman for the business said it was impossible to predict where cust might come adding it was possible that Northern Ireland could hit to a greater or lesser extent.
“As this stage of the process kicks off that is what we don’t know,” he said.
Unite said the move was a “hammer blow” for workers who have “given their all” to make the UK subsidiary highly profitable.
The announcement is not linked to the vote to leave the EU, and is not driven by any domestic issues.
No jobs will go as a result of the programme until 2017.
Unite said workers will be affected at Fujitsu’s major sites which include Bracknell, Crewe, Manchester, Stevenage, Wakefield and Warrington as well as Belfast and Londonderry.
Earlier this year, Fujitsu announced plans to close its network and telecoms maintenance and repair centre in Antrim, making 40 people redundant.
“Fujitsu is planning a transformation program that will enable it to better support customers in the era of digital transformation,” said a statement.
“The company today advised its employee representative forum of plans to restructure the organisation in order to provide better service and respond more quickly to customer needs.
“All affected employees will be offered guidance and support and Fujitsu is establishing a consultation process with elected employee representatives.”