Iberia (IB, Madrid Barajas) could lay off 1000 staff by mid-2017, reports Reuters, citing Chief Executive Officer Luis Gallego. The outcome will depend on discussions with unions in the near future. Gallego made the comments while on a trip to Sao Paulo, Brazil.

As previously reported, Iberia recently signed an agreement with its unions allowing it to create a new low-cost long-haul carrier. The project had met with resistance from cabin crew who were concerned that the Barcelona El Prat-based carrier would cannibalise Iberia's Madrid Barajas traffic.

Cabin crews have also raised concerns about Iberia's new configuration for the A340-600s it will deploy on its North American flights, which eliminates some Business Class seeats in favour of a new Premium Economy class. STICPLA (El Sindicato Independiente de Tripulantes de Cabina de Pasajeros de Líneas Aéreas) says that the aircraft will carry more passengers with fewer staff.