Budget airline Ryanair is to axe 1,000 jobs including 150 pilot and cabin crew posts, it was announced today.

The cutbacks are at Frankfurt Hahn airport and will affect flight frequencies to the German base from Stansted and Edinburgh airports.

Ryanair blamed the cuts, to take effect from next summer, on the German government's new eight euro (about £7) tourist tax.

Services between Hahn and the Irish destinations of Dublin and Kerry are unaffected. But around 30% of Ryanair's flights from Hahn are being scrapped and nine routes from Hahn are being axed including Berlin, Prague and Gothenburg.

Also, from next summer Ryanair will reduce its Hahn-based fleet of aircraft from 11 planes to eight. Overall, the cutbacks will mean the Irish carrier will handle one million fewer passengers a year at the German airport.

Ryanair's Michael Cawley said today: "The German government's eight-euro tourist tax will do significant damage to traffic and tourism in Germany next year.

"Ryanair will move three aircraft to our bases outside Germany which welcome tourists instead of taxing them. We urge the German government to look again at the damaging impact of tourist taxes in Ireland and the UK before implementing this tourist tax which will lead to similar declines in traffic and jobs at German airports."