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Cathay Pacific hints on cutting pilot jobs

The Cathay Pacific group has given a hint on possibly trimming pilot jobs in the airline amid the coronavirus crisis which has caused a plunge in passenger air travel demand. This is part of their "structural change" review, ahead of discussions in two weeks.


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In a report from South China Morning Post, the airline has made major capacity cuts as a result of low passenger air travel demand and government imposed lockdowns,

In a memo to the company's 4,100 flight deck crew, aircrew general manager Alex McGowan said that the airline's priority is to "preserve pilot jobs where we can".

Cathay Pacific also said that the airline has upcoming discussions with the Hong Kong Air Crew Officers Association (HKAOA), which represents unionized pilots. This would also involve "challenging conversations".

McGowan said, "We had hoped that by now we would have met with the HKAOA to begin to work through the implications of the crisis for our Hong Kong-based pilots."

“These will be challenging conversations and we want to ensure we don’t undertake them until we have more clarity. I appreciate the current lack of detail allows rumour and speculation to grow and I’m very sorry for this," he continued.

The contents of the memo is suggesting one approach the airline might take in talks as referenced to the job losses caused by the company’s previous restructurings, and a lower-cost pilot contract. Pilots who previously opted to switch to the cheaper contract took an approximately 50% to 60% total pay cut, which includes housing and other allowances.

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