CP RAIL TO ELIMINATE 500 NON-UNION JOBS

CP RAIL TO ELIMINATE 500 NON-UNION JOBS

CP Rail announced it is cutting 500 non-union jobs across its network in North America and freezing all management salaries.

About half of the jobs lost are at the carrier's Montreal head office.The remainder are in Toronto, Vancouver and Minneapolis, the headquarters of CP Rail's Soo Line Railway Co.

CP needs to weather the recession with fewer staff in order to remain competitive, said Barry Scott, a company spokesman.

The company employs 26,000 people in Canada and the United States. The white-collar staff reductions will shave the railway's administrative and managerial work force to about 3,500.

CP Rail's profit plunged to US$20.4 million (C$24.5 million) last year from C$316 million in 1990. In the last three months of 1991, CP Rail posted a loss of C$159 million.

For all of 1991, parent company Canadian Pacific Ltd. lost a record C$914 million, with its forestry, energy and waste management operations hit particularly hard.

In recent statements, William Stinson, CP chief executive, has criticized the Canadian government for a heavy tax burden imposed on the railways in Canada.

"We're being taxed to death compared to our U.S. competitors," he said.

According to industry estimates, CP Rail and CN Rail together pay about C$300 million more in fuel and other taxes than U.S. railroads.