93 customs jobs lost as Newry HMRC office closes

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More than 90 jobs are to go with the closure of Newry HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) office it has been confirmed.

The office is one of 14 across the UK set to shut by the end of 2015 as part of a wider restructuring plan.

HMRC said the automation of many of its processes meant it was changing how it conducted business, but said it would help workers find other jobs either elsewhere in the agency or the civil service.

The Public and Commercial Services union (PCS) said the number of job losses across the UK would be more than 1,000, adding it made “no economic sense” to make cuts in the department that collects taxes.

An HMRC spokesman said: “In line with our spending review settlements, HMRC is continuing to reduce in size, to become more highly-skilled and to operate from fewer locations. We are also changing the way we work to better meet the rising expectations of our customers and help them ensure they get things right.”

Newry and Armagh MLA Dominic Bradley said the confirmation of the closure was a “devastating blow” blow for the employees concerned and to the local economy.