More pressure is being exerted on ministers to provide specific support for aviation after Tui announced 8,000 job cuts.

The disclosure by Europe’s largest travel group follows British Airways planning to cut 13,000 jobs, and 3,000 at risk at both Virgin Atlantic and Ryanair.

The Unite union, which represents more than 65,000 aviation workers, reiterated its call for the government to develop specific financial support for the aviation sector.

Assistant general secretary Diana Holland said: “The announcement from Tui underlines that globally all aviation and travel operators are under severe pressure.

“Tui is the latest company to announce potential job losses and restructuring proposals.

“The announcement of the extension of the job retention scheme was a vital lifeline for the aviation sector and we urge employers like Tui to use this as a time to support jobs.

“The government must also now bring forward a plan for specific support for aviation in the UK if the sector is going to survive in any meaningful form.

“Governments across Europe and globally are providing support for their aviation sectors but the UK government is yet to act, threatening jobs, airlines and airports.

“Unite has developed a blueprint setting out how the government should intervene in the aviation sector to ensure it survives which will protect jobs, preserve regional connectivity and boost environmental standards in the short, medium and long-term.

“As an island nation, aviation is essential for our work, trade and travel and hundreds of thousands of jobs are reliant on it.”

She spoke as the Cabinet Office confirmed five new ministerial-led taskforces, including one covering international aviation under the auspices of the Department for Transport, “reflecting the unique challenges that sector is facing”.

A statement said: “The government recognises this has been a particularly challenging time for the international aviation industry.

“These taskforces will be crucial to the reopening of Britain’s economy and each one will lead on developing new Covid-19 secure guidelines for the re-opening of public places and businesses, where and when it is safe to do so.”