General Electric announced on Thursday that it was cutting 12,000 jobs in its global energy business while the struggling industrial conglomerate responds to declining demand for fossil fuel plants.
The US company launched the cuts to save $ 1 billion in 2018, saying: I expected the current difficulties in the sector to continue.
"Traditional electricity markets, including gas and coal, have softened," said GE.
Rumors of extensive labor cuts were confirmed by union sources on Wednesday, with staff in Switzerland and Germany among the hardest hit.
"This decision was painful but necessary for GE Power to respond to disruption in the energy market, which is driving significantly lower volumes of products and services," said Russell Stokes, director of GE Power.
"Power will continue to be a work in progress in 2018. We expect the market challenges to continue, but this plan will position us for 2019 and beyond."
One third of the Swiss workforce of the company face layoffs, while 16 percent of its staff in Germany are also likely to be laid off in the jolt.
GE said he had begun talks with labor leaders about the steps.
The demand for new thermal power plants drastically decreased all rich countries, said GE, while traditional service customers have reduced their investments due to market deterioration and uncertainty about future climate policy measures.
Almost no new power plant project had been commissioned in Germany in recent years, said GE. The increased Asian competition also increased the pressures on prices.
Last month, General Electric CEO John Flannery described plans to reduce the manufacturing footprint of GE's energy business to respond to a sharp drop in demand for fossil-fuel power equipment. GE did not specify how many jobs would be cut or where.
GE's rival, Siemens, is cutting some 6,900 jobs, or about 2 percent of its global workforce, mainly in its energy and gas division, which has been hit by the rapid growth of renewable energy .