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Telekom Brass Agree to Pay Cuts

Deutsche Telekom offered to reduce pay for its top management in a bid for support for its plan to cut wages of more than half its German workforce. Telekom plans to cut as many as 55,000 jobs through 2005. The company’s seven-member management board would take a wage cut of the same percentage as the workers, Bloomberg News reported a Telekom spokesman as saying. Chief Executive Kai-Uwe Ricke is paid an annual salary of 1.25 million euros ($1.6 million) and his pay can double if he achieves certain goals. The offer is “a sign of solidarity to the workforce,'' and was agreed by the board two weeks ago, the Telekom spokesman was quoted as saying. The plans were branded “totally unacceptable” by Germany’s largest trade and service union, VerDi.