Under the Delivering Quality First (DQF) initiative announced last year, the BBC intends to create a new combined newsgathering operation across UK and world news, based at the newly-refurbished Broadcasting House in London.
The head of BBC News Helen Boaden revealed today in an email to staff that the austerity drive will also require the loss of around 140 jobs by April 2013, including 28 in the newsroom, 70 in news programmes and the remainder in newsgathering and other areas.
The cuts will affect BBC Two's Newsnight and the BBC News Channel, it is understood, while BBC shows Taking a Stand and Beyond Westminster could be facing the axe as BBC radio current affairs attempts to save £500,000 a year.
The Law In Action and In Business shows are being reviewed as the corporation looks at ways of making some programmes more cheaply.
The Guardian claims that flagship shows Today and The World At One will have to make do with three fewer reporters across both programmes.
In her email, Boaden told staff that she realised the cuts were not "easy or painless for individuals or teams".
She added: "As we have always done, we will work extremely hard to avoid any compulsory redundancies though as the BBC gets smaller, we cannot guarantee complete success in this area."
In a separate email, multimedia newsroom boss Marian Hockaday said that the BBC News Channel will focus its budget on covering the "main stories" and breaking news. This means that non 'core' shows, such as On The Road With.. will be dropped.
The BBC Trust has not yet signed off the final proposals in the DQF initiative, but is expected to do so in the next month.
> BBC News Channel must stay distinctive despite cuts, says BBC Trust
The National Union of Journalists hit out at the potential damage of the cuts to the BBC's reputation as a world leader in journalism.
NUJ general secretary Michelle Stanistreet said that the cuts are down to BBC director general Mark Thompson's "shabby, behind-closed doors deal" with the government last October for the new licence fee settlement.
"His decision to agree to freeze the licence fee until 2017 means that the corporation faces these cuts as well as taking on an extra £340 million in new financial responsibilities, such as the World Service and the roll out of fast broadband," she said.
"The top quality journalism we expect from the BBC is under severe threat. There will be fewer original news packages and more repeats.
NUJ broadcasting organiser Sue Harris warned that Thompson, who will step down in the autumn, risks leaving the corporation with a "potentially devastating legacy".
"This is the first announcement of more cuts to come. This will have a serious impact on the quality of the service and will leave those left to struggle to fill in for lost posts," she said.
"In his leaving letter, Mark Thompson had the nerve to say that 'the BBC I will be leaving is so much stronger than the BBC I inherited back in 2004'.
"I beg to differ and we will be hoping to re-open talks with his successor to save the corporation from his potentially devastating legacy."
Stanistreet urged whoever succeeds Thompson as BBC director general later in the year to reconsider the cuts
"When times are tough, the money should be used to protect creative content and quality news journalism," she said.