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GM to cut 1,600 US salaried positions

General Motors Corp is cutting about 1,600 salaried jobs in the United States this week as it rushes to meet a June 1 deadline to restructure under US government oversight, the automaker said.

The reductions are part of GM's plan to slash its global salaried work force by about 10,000, or 14%, in a bid to cut costs. GM also aims to cut 37,000 hourly jobs worldwide by the end of the year.

GM, which has been surviving on $13.4 billion of government loans since the beginning of the year, has until June 1 to prepare deep cuts in debt, labor costs, dealership network and brands to prove that it can return to profitability. The Obama administration has said the alternative would be bankruptcy.

GM North American President Troy Clarke said in an email to employees that the cuts were needed to ensure GM's long-term viability.

The 1,600 employees will be separated effective May 1, GM said. (Reuters)