Spain's Naturgy proposes 1,000 voluntary redundancies

MADRID, March 24 (Reuters) - Spanish gas and electricity group Naturgy has proposed voluntary redundancy to about 1,000 employees in Spain, it said on Wednesday, in response to the shift towards a lower-carbon economy and increased competition in the energy sector.

The company is in the early stages of negotiating an agreement on the layoffs, a Naturgy spokeswoman said.

Naturgy is shifting its focus from gas to the low-carbon energy sources that governments across the world hope will reduce their economic dependence on planet-warming fossil fuels.

The company’s earnings have suffered as the COVID-19 pandemic crimped fuel demand and it has written down the value of gas assets that are losing market share to plants powered by renewable sources.

Australian investor IFM Global Infrastructure Fund has bid for a 22.7% stake in the company. (Reporting by Isla Binnie Editing by David Goodman )