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Old December 6th, 2008, 09:55 AM   #1241
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Cathay Pacific extends Mainland China check-in with new service from Shenzhen
4 December 2008
Press Release

Cathay Pacific Airways today announced a new service that allows passengers to have their boarding passes issued at Shenzhen International Airport (SZIA) for the airline’s flights departing from Hong Kong. Passengers can now complete their check-in procedures before taking cross-boundary land transportation to Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA).

Upon arrival at the airport in Hong Kong, passengers with baggage can go straight to the Cathay Pacific Self Check-in Bag Drop counter. Those without check-in baggage can proceed straight through to Immigration, speeding up the process of getting to their flight. Passengers departing from Shenzhen will need to arrive at SZIA at least 180 minutes before the scheduled departure time of their flight.

The new service, which came into effect 1 December, is being provided by SkyLink Passenger Services Company, a joint venture with Airport Authority Hong Kong. The Shenzhen check-in option is an extension of the “upstream” airline check-in service already being offered to Cathay Pacific passengers travelling between Shekou, Fuyong, Humen, Macau and HKIA’s SkyPier by cross-boundary ferry.

This new service will help to further strengthen Hong Kong’s dual role as gateway to the Mainland and leading international aviation hub by creating seamless connections between the Pearl River Delta region and international flights departing from Hong Kong.

Cathay Pacific Director Service Delivery Ivan Chu said: “We have been offering through-check services for passengers to and from Mainland China for more than 10 years as part of a continued effort to strengthen transportation links between Hong Kong and its neighbouring cities in the Pearl River Delta. We are pleased to be able to offer the check-in service from Shenzhen International Airport which we are sure will be welcomed by travellers.”
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Old December 6th, 2008, 03:46 PM   #1242
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Cathay Pacific Pares Expansion


HONG KONG -- Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd. is scaling back its planned capacity expansion next year in an effort to weather the economic downturn.

Hong Kong's flagship carrier also is seeking to defer construction of a new cargo terminal at the city's international airport to keep expansion in line with demand.

The carrier said it expects passenger capacity growth to be below 1% next year, down from its earlier target of 6%-7%. In line with the slower growth, the airline will offer voluntary unpaid leave to its cabin crew and pilots effective Jan 1.

"Visibility is low and it's hard to predict developments with any real certainty. Flexibility will be the key word in the months ahead," Cathay Pacific Chief Executive Tony Tyler said.

Cathay Pacific said it submitted a request to defer the construction of a new cargo terminal at Hong Kong International Airport by up to two years.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1228...googlenews_wsj
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Old December 7th, 2008, 11:04 AM   #1243
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Old December 7th, 2008, 04:39 PM   #1244
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Reach for the sky in aviation
6 December 2008
South China Morning Post

Engineering graduates have the opportunity to launch a career in aviation with Hong Kong-based international airline Cathay Pacific. Engineering students do not receive any specific aviation training during their studies so the carrier launched an engineering trainee programme 20 years ago.

Choosing from 800 to 1,000 applications, the yearly intake ranges from five to eight trainees on average, with graduates working for Cathay Pacific or its subsidiary Dragonair.

The programme recruits fresh engineering graduates or those who have one to two years of working experience. Up to 70 per cent of the applicants are from local universities, such as the University of Hong Kong and Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, which have related engineering courses.

"We only recruit graduates with proper engineering training during their tertiary studies," said Darryl Chan, head of engineering at Dragonair. "Trainees need to have a basic foundation in order to enhance their learning during the programme."

Other than academic requirements, applicants need to possess excellent communication and language skills, including English, Cantonese and Putonghua. A good sense of business management is sought and applicants need to be able to work as part of a team and be good leaders.

"We have made some changes in the 2008 programme," Mr Chan said. "Previously, our programme concentrated on the technical aspects, but we added business and commercial training into last year's programme as a strong commercial sense is also essential for further development in this industry."

The 33-month programme includes training for a formal aircraft general familiarisation course, business training and team projects.

Other than classroom training, the programme includes on-the-job training with rotations in different functional sections in the engineering department. Trainees are sent to Hongkong Aircraft Engineering Company (Haeco) and Taikoo (Xiamen) Aircraft Engineering Company (Taeco) to understand the practical operations of the department.

"After completing the programme, trainees can enter the commercial stream or the technical stream," said Joyce Cheung, personnel manager for Hong Kong ground staff at Cathay Pacific. "Their ability and performance during the training process determines the stream they join."

For trainees chosen to develop in the commercial stream, they start as a business executive. They then move up to assistant manager before finally being promoted to management level.

As for the technical stream, graduates start their career as an assistant engineer, followed by promotions to engineer and senior engineer before entering the management level.

The selection process starts with interviews and group discussions in which the communication and language skills of applicants are assessed. The second stage consists of a presentation related to engineering or airplanes and numerical tests for applicants to display their knowledge in the area.

Finally, selected applicants are invited to attend a final interview with senior managers in the engineering department.

"Applicants must have an interest in the aviation industry," Ms Cheung said. "You should be yourself during the process as interviewers choose applicants who are a best-fit for the company." Wendy Wong and Ma Chi, graduates from the 2004 engineering trainee programme, joined the scheme because of their deep interest in aviation engineering.

"As an engineering student, I wanted to contribute to this industry," said Ms Wong, a planning engineer. "When I started the programme, the most challenging thing was memorising the technical terms and acronyms that I had never seen before. But I soon overcame this obstacle. This programme gives a lot of learning opportunities and space for us."

Mr Ma, a technical services engineer, said: "The company puts a lot of resources into the programme and includes on-the-job training at Haeco in Hong Kong, which I enjoyed a lot. There were examinations and rotations in different departments, so we were able to understand the whole operation and get to meet more of our colleagues."
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Old December 8th, 2008, 05:53 PM   #1245
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I was quite enthusiastic until I found the lines:

*Must speak Chinese languages ? That means I can't apply for it .
* Out of 800-1000 applications, less than 10 are accepted
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Old December 8th, 2008, 06:49 PM   #1246
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By harrykewell0707 from HKADB :





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Old December 8th, 2008, 07:12 PM   #1247
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Aviation veteran says airlines in for nasty flight
David Turnbull sees greatest challenge yet for Asian carriers

8 December 2008
South China Morning Post

David Turnbull's love of aviation harks back to before the jet age - to the airstrips of the African continent where he spent his early childhood.

The former chief executive of Cathay Pacific Airways has a genuine interest in all things aviation that springs from those formative experiences. And in his new role as chairman of consultancy firm Seabury Aviation & Aerospace Asia, he is returning to his roots.

The 53-year-old spent the better part of 30 years in the aviation industry before his unhappy departure from Cathay Pacific in 2006. He seldom talks about his departure from the Hong Kong flag carrier, but admits that he is still in love with the company and treasured his eight years as chief executive.

His love for aircraft and flying started as a child of seven living in Kenya, where his father was based with the British Army. Flying back and forth between Africa and his boarding school in England, two to three times a year, he was fascinated by flight and the different types of aircraft.

In the pre-jet age, David Turnbull and his brother were often stuck in airports in between connecting flights. The propeller aircraft of the time could only cover relatively short distances before refuelling. The trip was broken into four flights: from Nairobi to Entebbe, Entebbe to Khartoum, Khartoum to Rome, and Rome to London. With lots of time to kill, the two brothers invented a game of guessing what types of aircraft were landing at the various airports.

Mr Turnbull was made a director of Cathay in 1994 and took up the positions of deputy managing director in 1994 and managing director in 1996. He also served as chairman of Hong Kong Aircraft Engineering from March 1995 to August 2006, and as a non-executive director of the Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corp, Hysan Development and Air China.

How can airlines survive the tough conditions facing the industry?

Cutting costs is the first priority, such as getting rid of old equipment that is loss-making. The faster you react to the situation the better. There's quite a tendency to say, well we'll give it a few more months to see if things get better. Every day you do that you drain away your fire power. Better to cut first, cut early and quickly.

Airlines are not new to crises like this and this is a particularly nasty one. In Hong Kong, we have encountered quite a few and anything you can do to deal with it is important. Whether you made an effort to manage your balance sheet, your debt ratios and how much recruitment you did will decide your ability to survive.

But this time the crisis is more severe, right?

Obviously, it is more severe. Actually the Asian financial crisis was quite bad but the problem with a crisis like this is you don't know how long it will last. During Sars, you knew it couldn't last for two or three years. It would probably only last for six to nine months.

Do you think Asian carriers have responded well to the current crisis?

Normally, they respond pretty well. We have had a few knotty problems over the years and are quite experienced in responding to crisis. On the other hand, you have to remember that not all airlines in Asia are equal. Some of them are owned by governments and governments have different agendas. That makes the cocktail slightly different.

With oil prices falling, do you see a better operating environment for airlines?

You have got to remember that a lot of airlines tend to lock in long-term contracts and so do not get the immediate benefit of falling fuel prices.

Cathay incurred HK$2.8 billion of fuel-hedging losses as of October. How should Asian carriers manage the risk?

I am not in a position to comment on Cathay's policy as I have been away for years. With fuel hedging, you can never really beat the market. If you do, it is pure luck. It's only a way to try to avoid getting caught by the big spikes. You want some certainty in fuel costs when you're doing the budget and create some certainty when you deliver products.

What's happening this time is very unusual. Oil prices went up a lot and have had a huge spike downward in a very short time. The price of fuel in the market is much less than people have contracted to buy. I can't remember if oil prices have had the same kind of rapid movement before.

When you were chief executive of Cathay, what was your fuel hedging policy?

It was successful. We didn't hedge all fuel but we hedged a good proportion. We didn't experience the big movements seen today.

Cathay is to ground two freighters next year. Do you think more Asian carriers will follow suit?

I think they will if demand continues to slump. Air cargo in particular faces severe problems. Most Asian carriers fly wide-body aircraft and wide-body aircraft have big under-belly spaces to carry a lot of cargo. Most Asian station carriers therefore have a very significant portion of their revenue coming from cargo. Cargo is bound to be affected by the credit crunch and demand problems so there would be significant revenue deterioration in this part of the world. Cargo is a very big issue in Asia. On average, Asian carriers will use their freighters less. There are two types of grounding: sitting the freighters in a desert and taking the engines off or having them around [in the airport] basically just idle.

What does Seabury do and what kind of services does it provide?

A consultancy will reorganise your planning department or engineering facility. It is sort of bread-and-butter type of work. Seabury likes to get involved in the strategic planning of what the industry will be like in five years' time. If the company doesn't think about the issue in advance, it will get caught out. Seabury is well known in the United States but in this part of the world people don't know about it.

You have several hats. You are the chairman of Seabury, chairman of shipping company Pacific Basin Shipping and adviser to India's Kingfisher Airlines. What is the difference between the shipping and airline industries?

I have spent my whole life in aviation and related business. Aviation and shipping are not totally different. They have similar problems on their balance sheets since they have to invest in costly equipment. They are different but they have similarities: saving for rainy days, making sure you can pay the bills and enhancing your balance sheet. Two years ago, bankers were all saying that airlines did not have enough debt and had to gear up their balance sheets. But now that has all changed.

The airline business has more politics and regulatory issues then shipping. Aviation also has more of a retail element than shipping. People need to fly though they will cut back during economic downturns. There are some places in the world you can't get around by any other way but flying.

How do you prioritise your time with these different jobs?

My primary job is on the shipping side. But I am sure more time will be put into aviation when Seabury picks up in this part of the world. There is quite a lot to do in Asia since it is a huge place and our name is unknown. We hope to use my name to help. The advantage of being a part-time executive is that you are removed from the administrative jobs. Even when I was with Cathay, I was notorious for not liking administration work.

Hong Kong will be the first Asian base for Seabury. What is your next step?

We started in Hong Kong but I doubt our initial activities will be in the city because there is no airline requiring our assistance. They are very well-run. Maybe some financial institutions will need us, but not carriers. But the longer the crisis lasts, the more carriers will find they need some help. If the process is prolonged, the chief executives of some carriers may say, "God I need to talk to someone else to get some new ideas."

Do you miss your time at Cathay?

Yes. I loved Cathay. I was the chief executive for eight years, which I enjoyed very much. We experienced many ups and downs such as the Asian financial crisis, Sars and September 11. There were some inconveniences when we moved from the old airport at Kai Tak to Chek Lap Kok. Not many airlines have to do the rebuilding, reconstruction and the entire infrastructure in a new airport.

One good year was always followed by something troublesome the next year, but it always came back. This time it may take a bit longer because of the worldwide economy being hit so hard. But it will come back. Some airlines will go bankrupt. Some ought to go bankrupt but they don't since the government supports them.

What are the long-term concerns for the airline industry in Asia and globally?

In India, the per-capita income is too low. People can't afford to pay the ticket prices. Airlines try to compete with the railways and air tickets are undersold. It's not going to work. In Europe, there's high-speed train competing since trains can get rid of time-consuming security checks. Airlines, unlike trains, cannot send you from a city centre to another city centre. Fast trains in Europe are a big threat to airlines.

The central government is planning to build a fast train railway between Beijing and Shanghai, which is just a two-hour ride. People will take that since you don't need to wait at the airport for check-in and boarding.
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Old December 9th, 2008, 04:30 PM   #1248
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By citybird767 from HKADB - a hovering 747 :





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Old December 10th, 2008, 04:33 PM   #1249
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Cathay Pacific signatory to Poznan Communique which seeks a global, integrated solution to climate change
8 December 2008
Press Release

Cathay Pacific Airways today announced that it is one of 140 major companies to sign a communiqué that sets out what the companies believe should be the key elements of an international deal on climate change. The Poznan Communiqué was timed to coincide with the start of the second week of the United Nations-led climate negotiations (COP 14) currently taking place in Poznan, Poland, and copies will be delivered to each of the 192 countries at the meeting.

The communiqué states that climate change is too complex to address with a single approach. “Action will be needed at local, state, national and regional levels and by all stakeholders: governments, businesses, investors, civil society and consumers,” it states.

“A sufficiently ambitious, international, comprehensive and legally binding United Nations agreement is needed as a matter of urgency to provide context for national actions and policies, to facilitate international cooperation, and to ensure the overall scale of the challenge will be met. Crucially, it would also provide business with the certainty and frameworks it needs to scale up global investment in low-carbon technologies.”

Commenting on the current economic downturn, the signatories state that "decisive action will stimulate global economic activity" and that delaying action will increase the costs of stabilising the climate. The communiqué also states that any credible comprehensive agreement must include mechanisms to reduce tropical deforestation. “The continuing destruction of these ecosystems accounts for up to a fifth of annual greenhouse gas emissions. Stopping deforestation represents an immediate and cost-effective means of combating climate change,” it says.

The communiqué states that every effort must be made at COP 14 to ensure that an agreement of sufficient ambition and scope can be adopted at COP 15 in Copenhagen in December 2009. It will be important that the agreement includes a comprehensive global approach to emissions from international aviation and shipping. Currently, aviation faces a situation where various countries are developing different emissions schemes with different mechanisms, creating a lot of cost that does not go to help the environment.

Cathay Pacific Chief Executive Tony Tyler said: “We are very encouraged that business leaders are looking for a global, integrated solution to climate change – a solution that is based on science not politics and uses a range of measures, including market measures, standards and regulation, to achieve its goals. Cathay Pacific is very much behind a global solution for aviation, which is one of the key recommendations of the communiqué.”

Mr Tyler stressed that with its undoubted expertise, Asia doesn’t have to follow the same path as other parts of the world when it comes to technology development. “China is already the world's largest producer and consumer of renewable energy technologies. In parallel, Asian governments need to increase co-operation in regional and global initiatives for the transfer of environmental technologies,” Mr Tyler said.

“At the policy level, Asia needs to take its rightful place at the leadership table in the post-Kyoto climate discussions. Asia should put forward its own sustainable development and emissions-reduction proposals, not wait for others to find a solution. We need to become masters of our own destiny and make key decisions that will move us towards the right solutions to address climate change.”

The Poznan communiqué was produced and coordinated by the Prince of Wales's Corporate Leaders Group on Climate Change. The full text of the Poznan Communiqué is available at www.poznancommunique.com along with a full list of signatories.
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Old December 11th, 2008, 03:46 PM   #1250
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Cathay Pacific releases combined traffic figures for November 2008
11 December 2008
Press Release

Cathay Pacific Airways today released combined Cathay Pacific and Dragonair traffic figures for November 2008 that show a slide in the number of passengers carried and a steep drop in cargo and mail tonnage compared to the same month last year.

In November, the two airlines carried a total of 1,978,264 passengers – a decline of 2.2% on the same month in 2007, while the load factor dipped by 4.7 percentage points to 75.7%. Capacity for the month, measured in available seat kilometres (ASKs), was up 7.4% over the same month last year. For the year to date, the number of passengers carried has risen by 8.1% compared to a capacity rise of 13.5%.

Cathay Pacific and Dragonair carried a total of 131,758 tonnes of cargo and mail in November, down 15.4% on the same month last year, while capacity, measured in available cargo/mail tonne kilometres, fell by 3.8%. The cargo and mail load factor dropped by 5.3 percentage points to 64.5%. For the year to date, cargo and mail tonnage has climbed by 0.6% compared to a capacity rise of 2.2%.

Cathay Pacific General Manager Revenue Management Tom Owen said: “We saw further weakening in many of our key passenger markets in November, with Hong Kong suffering a particularly sharp drop in demand, especially on the corporate side. Passenger numbers in the back end of the aircraft also weakened across the network, but nowhere near the dramatic decline in premium traffic. This decline intensified on long-haul as well as regional routes, as companies curtailed travel or traded down."

Cathay Pacific General Manager Cargo Sales & Marketing Titus Diu said: “November is traditionally one of the busiest months in the airfreight business but this year the peak simply didn’t happen. Demand was much weaker than expected in most of the markets we operate in, with a sharp falloff in Hong Kong in particular. We worked to further reduce our capacity in light of the general situation and we have announced we will park three of our freighters – two from Cathay Pacific and one from Dragonair – with effect from January 2009.”
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Old December 12th, 2008, 11:56 AM   #1251
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國泰逾千員工爭放無薪假
12 December 2008
明報

佔機艙團隊17% 農曆新年最搶手

【明報專訊】國泰航空上月推出員工無薪假期計劃,原本是為扭轉虧損的慳錢招數,獲得國泰機艙人員「熱烈支持」。機艙團隊已收到超過1211宗申請,佔整體人手17%,尤其以農曆新年的無薪假最搶手,明年1至2月的名額已告爆滿。為了讓同事享受「悠長假期」,原本規定放假31日或以上的員工須暫停福利津貼,有關期限將延至91日。放假期間,員工仍可以享用公司的特惠機票旅遊。

國泰的內部通訊提到,為安排充足的人手工作,每月會檢討各級人手分配,並公布現時申請無薪假的情况(見表)。7000多人的機艙團隊,分為4級﹕機艙經理、高級艙務長、艙務長和艙務員,1至2月放無薪假的申請最熱烈,單是高級艙務長,已有超過556宗申請。

保留福利期限 31日延至91日

艙務長也十分支持無薪假,2月及4月的申請均已爆滿。艙務員多選7月和10月放無薪假。其他月份的餘額,各級也只剩四至五成。國泰表示,這反映員工對無薪假需求殷切。員工仍可以繼續申請放無薪假,但一經批准,便不可以取消或縮短。若太多人爭在同一時段放假,公司會讓較早入職、申請假期較長的員工獲優先機會。

為了讓員工安心放長假,國泰表示,原先放無薪假31日或以上的員工,會被暫時中止保險、醫療和房屋津貼等福利,現已將期限延長至91日。另外,機艙員工本身和家庭成員,在無薪假期間繼續可享有機票優惠,約為原價一折,好讓員工與家人度假旅遊。

無薪假最長1年

國泰又向員工澄清,部分員工參與無薪假,並不代表其他人的工作增加,因為整體員工的飛行時數減少,放無薪假的員工不會影響在職員工工時和薪酬。

國泰上月底公布,機艙服務員可申請為期兩星期至一年的自願無薪假,同時亦會實施機師自願無薪假計劃,並確保任何時候都有足夠人手。是次無薪假最長為一年,遠較03年SARS期間的3星期為長。03年國泰向員工推出無薪假,以節省開支,結果大部分員工放了3星期無薪假,其後有關員工亦獲發相等於3星期薪金的特別獎金作補償。
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Old December 16th, 2008, 05:45 AM   #1252
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Elderly passenger dies on Cathay flight just before takeoff
16 December 2008
South China Morning Post

A passenger died after collapsing on board a packed Cathay Pacific plane as it prepared to take off from Hong Kong to Bangkok.

Cabin crew tried desperately to revive the elderly man who fell unconscious shortly after boarding the Boeing 777-300, but they were unable to save him despite administering first aid.

A medical team was called to carry the passenger off flight CX 713 on Saturday morning and take him to hospital, where he was confirmed dead. The cause of the man's death was not known.

The incident unfolded in front of 352 passengers on the flight, which at the time the man was reported ill was 10 minutes away from its scheduled takeoff and had not begun taxiing.

A Cathay Pacific spokeswoman said: "The passenger was travelling in a family group of three. The cabin crew received a report of the passenger being unconscious before takeoff at around 9am.

"An ambulance was called and the passenger was rushed to hospital. We were later informed that sadly the passenger had passed away."

An airport worker who spoke to passengers said afterwards: "The cabin crew tried their very best to revive the passenger. They handled the situation extremely well in the circumstances. Unfortunately, despite their efforts, there was nothing they could do {hellip} It was a very traumatic event for everyone involved."

The flight was delayed for 30 minutes and took off at 9.40am after the passenger and his family members left the aircraft, the Cathay spokeswoman said.

In 2000, a Cathay Pacific flight from Hong Kong to Los Angeles was forced to divert to Narita airport in Japan when a woman passenger suffered a heart attack. She was dead by the time the plane landed.

Two years earlier, passengers on board an Emirates flight from Dubai to Hong Kong complained that a dead Filipino man in his 60s was left strapped in his seat for three hours after being declared dead by an onboard medic.

British Airways was criticised last year for moving the body of a dead passenger in her 70s into the first class compartment on a flight from New Delhi to London.

The dead woman's body was propped up in a seat using pillows and she was accompanied by her grieving daughter while the plane completed its journey.
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Old December 16th, 2008, 11:16 AM   #1253
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Dragonair: Manila Service Won't Hurt Cathay Pacific's Mkt Shr
16 December 2008

MANILA (Dow Jones)--Hong Kong's Dragonair said Tuesday that its entry into the Manila market won't cannibalize the market share of its parent, Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd. (0293.HK).

Manila is Dragonair's ninth destination since it was acquired by Cathay Pacific two years ago.

"We have different networks and we believe that since the market is growing there is more room for everybody," Maggie Yeung, Dragonair's general manager for international affairs, told reporters.

She said that despite the economic crisis, Dragonair remains committed to its goal of expanding its Asian network and is confident of the long-term prospect of travel industry.

"Traffic flow and demand between Manila and Hong Kong continue to grow and we strongly believe that the Manila service will benefit Dragonair's development in the long run," Yeung said.

Dragonair will operate an Airbus A320 to service the Manila-Hong Kong route five times a week, excluding Wednesdays and Sundays; and the Hong Kong-Manila route five times a week, except Tuesdays and Saturdays. The Hong Kong-Manila service started Monday, while the Manila-Hong Kong service commenced Tuesday.
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Old December 18th, 2008, 04:25 AM   #1254
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Cathay sees scary months ahead
17 December 2008
Hong KongStandard

Cathay Pacific Airways (0293) chief executive officer Tony Tyler said projections for its business in coming months are ``quite frankly, scary.''

``The fact that there is so little visibility makes the situation even more unsettling,'' Tyler said in Cathay's monthly internal magazine.

Cathay Pacific, Hong Kong's largest carrier, has trimmed growth plans and grounded aircraft to combat declining air traffic demand.

The airline has offered staff unpaid leave to cut labor costs.

Flight crew have applied for more than 4,000 days off within two weeks of the plan being unveiled last month, according to the magazine.

But Hong Kong's de facto flag carrier does not plan to add to cost-cutting measures it has already outlined, the magazine cited Tyler as saying at Cathay's annual meeting.

Cathay's passenger and cargo traffic declined 4.7 percent and 5.3 percent last month.

Citi analyst Anil Daswani forecast that the carrier will report a net loss of HK$4.96 billion this year.

``The scenario in the next several months will be very similar, it's likely to see passenger load rate dipping as traffic demand weakens,'' said Kelvin Lau at Daiwa Institute of Research.

Cathay Pacific shares closed yesterday down 1.41 percent at HK$8.37. The stock has gained 6 percent in the past month, but has lost 58 percent in the past 12 months.
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Old December 19th, 2008, 07:22 AM   #1255
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Cathay Pacific: Charges Filed By NZ Commission Against Co
14 December 2008

HONG KONG (Dow Jones)--Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd. (0293.HK) said Monday it will "vigorously defend" itself against charges brought against the carrier by the New Zealand Commerce Commission for alleged cartel activity in the air-cargo market.

The Hong Kong-based airline said it is "deeply disappointed" that the commission has taken the step of issuing proceedings against it, but didn't elaborate.

Cathay Pacific is among 13 airlines charged by the New Zealand competition regulator Monday for alleged "extensive and long-term cartel activity in the air-cargo market" over seven years.

The commission alleges the airlines colluded to raise cargo prices in and out of New Zealand via fuel surcharges.

In July, the commission said Cathay Pacific hadn't provided information and documents during its investigation into possible air-cargo price-fixing activity.

The airline denied the allegation and said it fully cooperated with the commission during its investigation.
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Old December 20th, 2008, 05:49 AM   #1256
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FS' speech at Dragonair Hanoi Inaugural Gala Dinner
Government Press Releas
Tuesday, December 16, 2008


Picture shows the Financial Secretary, Mr John C. Tsang (fourth from left), officiating at the inaugural ceremony of Dragonair's new Hong Kong/Hanoi service in Hanoi today (December 16). Other officiating guests are Chairman of Dragonair, Mr Tony Tyler (fourth from right); Director and Chief Executive Officer of Hong Kong Dragon Airlines, Mr Kenny Tang (third from left) and Director-General (International Cooperation), Ministry of Transportation of Vietnam, Mr Pham Thanh Tung (third from right).

Following is the speech by the Financial Secretary, Mr John C Tsang, at the Dragonair Hanoi Inaugural Gala Dinner in Hanoi, Vietnam today (December 16, Vietnam time):

Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen,

Good evening.

It is my great pleasure to join you tonight in celebrating Dragonair's new service between Hanoi and Hong Kong.

I congratulate Dragonair on the successful launch of this service and on taking this opportunity to improve travel links between Vietnam and Hong Kong.

The new passenger service was launched on October 26 with one flight a day in each direction. I am looking forward to trying it out when I return home tomorrow.

Hanoi is the eighth new destination for Dragonair since it became part of the Cathay Pacific Group in 2006.

As well as expanding its services, Dragonair has also maintained the high standard of service that we have come to expect from a Hong Kong-based airline.

For each of the past six years, Dragonair has been voted the Best Airline - China, in the Skytrax passenger survey. The same survey has ranked Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA) as the best in the world again this year, the seventh time in 10 years that we have received the accolade.

Dragonair and HKIA do, indeed, make a good winning team.

Vietnam is an important business partner to both Hong Kong and the Mainland. Last year, bilateral trade between Hong Kong and Vietnam topped US$3 billion. In the first nine months of this year, there was a 25% increase in trade between us compared to the same period last year.

Also in 2007, about US$1.7 billion in trade between Vietnam and the Mainland was routed through Hong Kong, or about 11% of total trade between the two countries.

I am confident that this new service will add an extra dimension to relationship-building between our two cities and between our two countries. Hong Kong's proximity to the Mainland and Hong Kong's central location in East Asia make us ideally suited for meetings, incentive travel, conventions and exhibitions, or what is better know as MICE travel. Travellers can also connect easily to major markets including Australia, the US and North Asia.

Of course, we also welcome more Vietnamese tourists to take advantage of this service. You can always be sure of a warm welcome in Hong Kong. Now that we are a Michelin town, you can certainly try out one of our Michelin starred restaurants as the first Michelin Guide on Hong Kong and Macao was unveiled earlier this month.

The wide range of cuisines in Hong Kong reflects our city's cosmopolitan character. People from all over the world, including Vietnam, live and work in Hong Kong and contribute to a rich cultural blend of East and West. Hong Kong is also one of the safest cities in the world, so when you come to visit, bring your family and friends along too.

Once again, congratulations to Dragonair on launching its daily passenger service to Hanoi.

I wish you all a Merry Christmas, a prosperous New Year, and happy flying.

Thank you.
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Old December 20th, 2008, 08:42 AM   #1257
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By Star Alliance from HKADB :







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Old December 20th, 2008, 02:11 PM   #1258
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By gosai from HKADB :



















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Old December 20th, 2008, 03:07 PM   #1259
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國泰無薪假擴至港龍1300空姐
12月16日 星期二 05:05

【明報專訊】國泰航空的自願無薪假期計劃,將進一步伸延至地勤人員,以及港龍1300多名機艙服務員,以減輕成本。國泰目前面對客運及貨運生意急跌的問題,在聖誕及農曆新年旺季過後,國泰明年3月的機位預訂,出現達雙位數字的百分比跌幅,行政總裁湯彥麟(Tony Tyler)形容情况「黯淡」(bleak)。

行政總裁形容未來「黯淡」

國泰上月底推出無薪假計劃後,已收到逾1200個申請,當中有45個機師,合共放假約14個月。湯彥麟在內部通訊表示,無薪假計劃將進一步擴展至本港地勤人員及港龍機艙服務員。港龍發言人表示,假期在明年2月開始,機艙服務員可申請1周至11個月的無薪假。

至於國泰的地勤人員,個別部門會因應工作量,批出無薪假申請,跟機艙人員一樣,申請假期由1周至12個月,明年1月實施。他們在首90日假期內,享有保險、子女教育津貼,按比例的房屋津貼,但91日或以後則暫停有關津貼。

湯彥麟在通訊稱,12月首周的整體收入,較集團預期的目標低逾18%。事實上,11月最後一周的整體收入,亦較目標低14%,跌勢持續。12月首周的貨運較目標低28%,客運也低15%,他形容情况愈來愈令人沮喪。各地貨幣下跌,也是影響收入的重要因素。

客運方面,聖誕及農曆新年還未算太壞,但明年3月的預訂較去年同期下跌的百分比已達雙位數字。受企業節省外遊開支影響,短線航班的商務及頭等艙預訂也開始「出問題」,香港市場銷售到企業的生意於12月首周急跌36%,其他主要市場也出現負增長。

貨運方面,國泰較早前已公布11月的貨運量,較去年同期下跌15%,香港空運貨站也指上月跌幅達19%。湯彥麟預計,未來仍然黯淡。

明報記者
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Old December 21st, 2008, 04:59 AM   #1260
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By dennis1182 from HKADB :





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