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Vodafone to cut 500 jobs in Germany

A customer walks past the Vodafone logo in a shopping mall in Prague February 7, 2012. British telecommunication firm Vodafone is expected t
A customer walks past the Vodafone logo in a shopping mall in Prague February 7, 2012. British telecommunication firm Vodafone is expected t

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Vodafone will cut 500 jobs in Germany, the company said on Monday, as the group adjusts to harsher competition and lower fees in Europe's largest economy.

"We have started a two-year program," a spokesman said, confirming reports in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung and Rheinische Post.

The company aims to shift some operations to Romania and India, as well as considerably reduce starting salaries. Areas like network technology and customer service will be affected.

Vodafone is suffering because of low price offers for smartphones from Deutsche Telekom's T-Mobile unit and a regulatory ruling that lowers the fees mobile operators can charge for calls coming from other networks.

(Reporting By Olaf Brenner; Editing by David Cowell)

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