JAL International has decided to ask cabin attendants in Japan to apply for a special early retirement plan.The voluntary plan will be open to cabin attendants (including those that have transferred to subsidiaries) who at the time of March 31 2008, have completed at least 15 years service and are 54 years or older if they hold managerial positions and are 50 years old or older if they hold non-managerial positions. The retirement date for these staff will be March 31, 2008 (900 staff are eligible). The company announced in the FY2007-2010 Medium-term Corporate Plan (released on Feb 6, 2007) measures to trim personnel costs including the implementation of early retirement measures to build a more dynamic, and streamlined organization. The company plans to reduce personnel costs by 50 billion yen each fiscal year when compared to FY2006 through a combination of the following measures: increasing human productivity by 10% through a bold review of work content and work process, work form, manpower allocation and restructuring of affiliated businesses; suspending new hiring; not replacing retiring staff; natural reduction in addition to the implementation of special early retirement programs. On August 24 2007, JAL announced that it had decided to ask ground staff in Japan in middle management positions (‘jicho’ & ‘kacho’ class in Japanese) who are 49 or above as of March 31, 2007 and have been employed for at least 15 years to apply for a special early retirement plan. As of today (Oct 11) the company has received approximately 630 applications for this scheme. The retirement date for these staff will be November 30, 2007. (1,000 staff are eligible) JAL also offered an early retirement program to senior management staff in Japan who are 54 years and over on March 22, 2007. Applicable staff for the new program were vice president level department heads (‘bucho’ class in Japanese) in JAL’s ground-based staff, cabin attendant and flight operations departments. A total of 250 applied and retired June 30, 2007. (450 staff were eligible). To secure smooth business operations and pass on skills and techniques, maintenance engineering staff and flight operations control staff have been excluded from the early retirement schemes.