Cathay Pacific to slash 6,000 jobs amid crisis

Hong Kong's national carrier is also axing one of their subsidiary airline brands

Cathay Pacific to slash 6,000 jobs amid crisis

After much speculation, Cathay Pacific has finally announced a plan to retrench over 6,000 employees globally.

This will be about an 18% cut of their total headcount – much lower than their initial plan of cutting over 8,000 jobs.

The scale of their cuts is also slightly smaller than other airlines, which has been averaging at about 20% to 30% of the workforce. Singapore Airlines, for instance, cut over 20% of their staff.

Read more: Cathay Pacific rejects additional wage relief support

In addition, the airline announced that they will be axing Cathay Dragon, a subsidiary carrier that primarily had flights to mainland China and other regional destinations.

Globally, the group has 33,000 staff, with 26,500 working for Cathay Pacific and Cathay Dragon.

This announcement comes after months of speculation from industry experts and Cathay employees, which saw labour unions going on active campaigns to save as many jobs as possible for Hong Kong staffers.

Read more: Cathay Pacific is ‘open’ to employee ideas

Cathay has been struggling with its finances even before COVID-19 hit, but the pandemic has led to even bigger losses – they lost a record $1.7 billion in the first six months of this year alone.

They continue to make losses every month, reported the South China Morning Post, so news that they’ll be operating at less than half capacity next year compared to pre-COVID levels, is even more devastating.

They announced this on Monday, even as COVID-19 ‘safe travel bubbles’ are being set by countries, including between Singapore and Hong Kong.

The hard-hit industry continues to brace for a slow pace of recovery, with associations currently predicting it would take until 2024 before the global travel sector recovers.

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