Dutch Philips Electronics announced it will lay off 1,600 workers, or 5 percent of the workforce, at its Healthcare division. According to the company, the job cuts are part of an accelerated cost-savings push caused by the global economic slowdown.

Last month, Philips said it would take measures to maintain profitability across all three business lines. The company also stated that it would take about a $63 million charge for the healthcare restructuring in the fourth quarter, although it is not indicated how much of that charge will be linked to the lay-offs.

According to the company, it looks to improve its healthcare margins and streamline operations, particularly in its imaging systems business.

On Saturday, a regional newspaper quoted a Philips spokesman confirming the job cuts, however, he did not discuss the specifics, such as when the layoffs will occur and what kinds of workers will be affected.

Further details about the company’s restructuring will be revealed at its fourth-quarter results in January.

A company rep said 32,000 workers are employed at Philips’ healthcare division, one of the world’s top three hospital equipment makers.