He added that the company had no plans for lay-offs this year.
The airline in January said it expected its net loss for 2008 to have at least doubled from the previous year’s RMB435 million($63.62 million) loss, as the passenger travel market weakened.
The company also plans to raise RMB1 billion via a private placement of shares to bolster its working capital.
Zhou also told reporters that the company had not been informed about any plans for a possible merger with China Eastern Airlines, and that the parent companies of the two airlines had not discussed the possibility of a merger between themselves.
Government and industry sources have told Reuters the Chinese government was discussing the possibility of brokering a merger of Shanghai-based China Eastern and smaller Shanghai Airlines, although the two airlines themselves have said they had not discussed such a move.
‘I haven’t been informed by the Shanghai government or our parent about the possibility of a merger with China Eastern,’ Zhou said.
Speculation has mounted of a major restructuring of China’s loss-making airline industry, as carriers seek government aid to withstand a slump in passenger traffic that has accompanied the economic slowdown.
Zhou said Shanghai Airlines would not be using its quota from the authorities for two or three new aircraft this year and next, adding that the carrier was also in discussions with Boeing on whether to accept an order for a 787 Dreamliner aircraft ordered previously.