Israel Electric plans to reduce its workforce by 2,500 employees over the next three years, including about 70 executives, or approximately 16 percent of its staff, the company announced Wednesday. The decision was approved by IE's board of directors Wednesday morning. CEO Amos Lasker said the move was part of a reorganization aimed at cutting costs. "The decision taken by the government that allows private investors to set up electric generating plants equal to 20% of the generating capacity of Israel means that our yearly income will fall by 20%, and this amounts to an annual NIS 2 billion," he said. "Our redundancy plans will reduce costs by up to NIS 750 million a year." IE workers were not consulted about the plan. On Tuesday, the workers committee reported that management was planning to fire 1,500 employees. Lasker told The Jerusalem Post after the plan was approved on Wednesday that management "would be meeting [the union] in the afternoon to explain the plan." According to IE chairman Moti Friedman, "The redundancy plan was necessary for the future prosperity of the company." He said he was sure the workers would understand and approve. In the past, the workers' representatives were opposed to any layoffs. But this time the management is offering a sweetener - part of the money saved by the layoffs will be used to increase the salaries of those remaining.