BP has announced plans to cut 10,000 staff by the end of the year.

Like many companies who have been affected by the Coronavirus pandemic, the oil giant said the cuts were essential following the global slump in oil demand. 

“You are already aware that, beyond the clear human tragedy, there has been widespread economic fallout, along with consequences for our industry and our company,” said Bernard Looney, BP’s Chief Executive, in an email to staff.

“The oil price has plunged well below the level we need to turn a profit. We are spending much, much more than we make – I am talking millions of dollars, every day. And as a result, our net debt rose by $6bn in the first quarter.”

The number of job cuts will equal about 15% of the companies 15,000 global workforce.

During the lockdown, the cost of oil fell to less than $20 a barrel. It has since recovered to $42 a barrel.

Looney, who took over BP earlier this year, said that “It was always part of the plan to make BP a leaner, faster-moving and lower carbon company.”

We will now begin a process that will see close to 10,000 people leaving BP – most by the end of this year. The majority of people affected will be in office-based jobs. We are protecting the frontline of the company and, as always, prioritising safe and reliable operations.”

BP is among many companies that are announcing staff cuts amid the pandemic. This week alone, Mulberry, Lookers, and Rolls-Royce have all announced redundancies that will affect staff in the UK. 

Shares in BP (LON: BP) are trading up 1.70% at 368.40 (1505GMT).