Cathay Pacific offers early retirement scheme to older pilots

Cathay Pacific has already taken short-term measures including executive pay cuts and two rounds of voluntary special leave scheme to cut costs. (AFP)
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Updated 01 August 2020

Cathay Pacific offers early retirement scheme to older pilots

  • Cathay Pacific has already taken short-term measures including executive pay cuts and voluntary special leaves

HONG KONG: Cathay Pacific Airways said it will offer a voluntary scheme to its Hong Kong-based pilots who are approaching retirement age to leave the group early, in a continued effort to cut costs amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The airline said in an email to Reuters on Saturday it is looking at different ways to reduce costs in the medium term, given reduced passenger demand with no immediate signs of improvement. The retirement plan was first reported in local media.
Cathay has already taken short-term measures including executive pay cuts and two rounds of voluntary special leave scheme.
Pilots aged 50 or 55 and above, depending on the retirement age outlined in their contract as 55 or 65 respectively, are eligible to apply for the early retirement scheme, the carrier said. Pilots aged 58 and above at its regional arm Cathay Dragon are also eligible.
“The decision comes after careful consideration and is an effective way for the Group to manage costs. Addressing a specific group of employees for this dedicated scheme helps us adjust to the new operating environment,” the carrier said.
The scheme will pay pilots who retire early three months basic salary for each year remaining before their normal retirement age, plus a further one-month allowance payment up to a maximum of 12 months’ basic salary.
Cathay said management is doing a comprehensive review of all aspects of the group’s operations, and it will make recommendations to the board on the future size and shape of the airline by the fourth quarter.
The group was looking to cut costs, streamline marketing, consolidate pilot contracts and move veteran pilots to cheaper contracts, sources said.
Cathay last month warned it expected to report a HK$9.9 billion ($1.28 billion) loss for the six months ending June 30, including impairment charges on 16 planes. The estimated loss would be Cathay’s biggest half-yearly loss in at least a decade.


Ice cream sales deliver cool quarter for Saudi Arabia’s Sadafco

Updated 20 October 2020

Ice cream sales deliver cool quarter for Saudi Arabia’s Sadafco

  • Second-quarter net profit rose 7.9 percent to $18.7 million

LONDON: Ice cream sales helped to boost earnings at Saudia Dairy and Foodstuff (Sadafco) in the second-quarter as the food processor maintained its market share in the Kingdom.

Second-quarter net profit rose 7.9 percent to $18.7 million (SR70.2 million) compared with a year earlier, the company said in a stock exchange filing.

Food companies worldwide have had mixed fortunes this year as lockdowns helped to boost sales across many product lines while logistical problems hampered attempts to satisfy customer demand.

Sadafco said sales of both ice cream and consumer milk rose 2 percent over the quarter while tomato paste sales jumped by 15 percent. Its gross profit margins were broadly in line with a year earlier at 33 percent.

“Our performance this quarter and this period continues to strengthen over last year,” the company said in a statement on Tuesday.

However, it said that the tripling of value added tax (VAT) in the Kingdom had a significant impact on shopping basket cost.

Sadafco is expanding operations in Saudi Arabia with the construction of a new ice cream factory and the planned acquisition of Horizon Food Factory.

It currently operates two factories in Jeddah and another in Dammam.