January 28, 2015 / 11:48 AM / 5 years ago

UPDATE 1-MTN plans to lay off up to 578 workers -union

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JOHANNESBURG, Jan 28 (Reuters) - Africa’s biggest telecommunications provider MTN plans to issue dismissal notices by May 1 to up to 578 people at its South African enterprise business unit, the Solidarity union said on Wednesday.

The Johannesburg-listed operator said last week it planned to restructure the business to strengthen is competitive advantage but did not say how many people would be affected.

Marius Croucamp, spokesman for the Solidarity union, said consultations begun on Jan. 21 and that MTN was offering two weeks severance pay for each year of service.

Another 476 employees lost their jobs at the company in the last 12 months, Croucamp said.

MTN was not immediately available for comment.

Its shares were up 1.7 percent at 1132 GMT, outpacing a 1 percent rise by Johannesburg’s blue-chip index. (Reporting by Helen Nyambura-Mwaura; Editing by James Macharia)

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