Insurer Swiss Re has announced plans to cut as may as 2,000 jobs over the next four months in its offices around the world, in an effort to save costs after its acquisition of Kansas City-based GE Insurance Solutions.

The Zurich-based insurer said that large office locations including London, Armonk in New York, Kansas City, Munich and Zurich will be most affected. The job reductions will be achieved through a combination of lay-offs and natural attrition, the company added.

The losses follow the completion of Swiss Re’s purchase of General Electric’s insurance unit in June. The $7.4 billion deal creates the world’s largest and most diversified global reinsurer, the company said. Swiss Re expects to save at least $300 million a year as a result of merging functions and teams.

Several European insurers have been cutting jobs recently as the industry consolidates. Germany’s Allianz announced 7,000 redundancies last month in order to cut costs after its Dresdner Bank acquisition, while UK-based Royal & SunAlliance has also announced that it will cut 1,550 jobs in a bid to save GBP130 million a year by 2008.