Plans by Tata Steel to cut as many as 3,000 jobs across its European business have been described as a “devastating blow” to the workforce.
The company said it wanted to come to terms with a “severe” international steel market, but added there would be no plant closures.
About two-thirds of the job cuts will be office-based.
Henrik Adam, chief executive of Tata Steel in Europe, said: “We are highlighting important proposals towards building a financially strong and sustainable European business.
“We plan to change how we work together to enable better co-operation and faster decision-making. This will help us become self-sustaining and cash-positive in the face of unprecedented severe market conditions, enabling us to lead the way towards a carbon-neutral future.”
Stephen Kinnock, Labour parliamentary candidate for Aberavon, and David Rees, Assembly Member for Aberavon, said: “This is a devastating blow to the workforce, their families and the wider community.
“It leaves steelworkers in great uncertainty as they await more details of any job losses in Wales and particularly at its largest works in Port Talbot.
“The steelworks is the beating heart of our community and any job losses will be felt deeply across Aberavon and the wider region.
“It is very disappointing that the statement issued by Tata Steel today contains so little detail. They refer to an estimated reduction in employee numbers of up to 3,000 across Tata Steel Europe’s operations, about two-thirds of which are expected to be office-based roles, but they provide absolutely no information about where the focus of those job losses will be.
“Will they be in the Netherlands or the UK, and if they are to be in the UK what will that mean for South Wales and our Port Talbot steelworks?
“Tata Steel should remember that these are real people with families to look after, they are not just numbers on a spreadsheet.”
Tata said its plans include a proposed new way of working to boost productivity and reduce bureaucracy as well as a focus on increasing sales of higher-value steel products.