The announcement came just weeks after Cathay said it had lost more than a billion US dollars in 2008, the company’s first full-year loss in a decade, due to the global slowdown as well as hedging bets on fuel prices that went wrong.
‘Our staff are being asked to make sacrifices that will be needed to see the company through this violent storm,’ chief executive Tony Tyler said. ‘The pain will be shared from the top down.’
The airline, one of the biggest in Asia, said that all staff would be asked to take up to four weeks of unpaid holiday in the coming 12 months.
Airlines across Asia have been hit hard in the current climate.
Flag carrier Air China said Friday it had booked a net loss of $1.4 billion dollars in 2008.
On Thursday China Eastern, the third-biggest airline in China, said it lost $2.2 billion dollars last year and earlier in the week, Australia’s Qantas announced 1,750 more job cuts after eliminating 1,500 last July.