According to the Daily Telegraph, a right-wing newspaper with close ties to the Conservative party, staff at the BBC World Service are bracing themselves for up to 1,000 job losses, as the broadcaster prepares to lose up to 40 per cent of its budget in next week’s Coalition spending review.
The World Service is funded from a £272 million annual grant-in-aid from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) which has asked the BBC for budgets reflecting either a 25 per cent or a 40 per cent cut. Employees fear that this will translate into the loss of between a quarter and a half of the World Service’s 2,017 jobs.
“It looks as if whole services will close, not just one or two jobs going from here and one or two from there,” said a source. “And the potential for redeployment of staff is lower within the World Service than at the rest of the BBC - you can’t transfer a Polish speaker to the Urdu service.”
The Telegraph report also suggests that BBC Monitoring, which employs over 400 people, could be closed completely.