CRUISE firm Carnival has said it is  ‘committed to finding a way forward’ after the operator was accused of being involved in a bid to fire and rehire 900 staff.

Southampton-based P&O Cruises – owned by Carnival UK – hit back at ‘factually inaccurate and damaging reports’ after the Nautilus union said Carnival notified its intentions to alter employment terms and conditions for 919 crew across 10 vessels, including Queen Mary 2.

In a statement addressing the situation, a spokesperson for Carnival said: “Nautilus International and Carnival UK are able to confirm, following joint discussions held (on Friday) afternoon, that both parties are committed to engaging in meaningful consultation in finding a way forward following the start of consultation on proposed contractual changes for 919 Maritime Professionals.”

READ MORE: P&O Cruises hit backs at reports 900 crew could be fired and rehired
They added: “Carnival UK has reassured Nautilus International of there being no intent to undertake steps towards dismissal and re-engagement and has rescinded the HR1 form submitted to the insolvency service, whilst providing an update the relevant Bermudan authorities.
“Both Nautilus International and Carnival UK are working cooperatively towards a negotiated settlement in the interest of all parties.”

Prior to this statement, P&O Cruises had stated “we are categorically not making any redundancies” after Nautilus had written to the company, calling for it to “withdraw the threat of fire and rehire and engage in meaningful negotiations.”

In a letter to its members Nautilus previously said: "Please be advised that... Nautilus received a HR1: Advanced Notification of Redundancies form which the company has submitted to both the UK government and the Bermudan authorities notifying them of the collective consultation."

At the time, Nautilus told its members it was "disappointed" by the company's approach.

It added: "We will continue to robustly defend members' jobs as we do not agree to any redundancies and actively campaign to stop fire and rehire.

"The current proposals are unacceptable to Nautilus, and we will continue to engage with the employer and members of the individual consultation groups."