Left Menu
Development News Edition

Air New Zealand to lay off 3,500 employees as virus halts travel

Reuters | Wellington | Updated: 31-03-2020 02:19 IST | Created: 31-03-2020 02:13 IST
Air New Zealand to lay off 3,500 employees as virus halts travel
Representative image Image Credit: Flickr

Air New Zealand said on Tuesday nearly a third of its employees, about 3,500, will be laid off in the coming months, as it grapples with severe global travel curbs due to the coronavirus that has forced it to cancel nearly all flights.

The national carrier, which employs 12,500 people, said the announced number of layoffs was a "conservative" assumption, and that it could rise if the domestic lockdown and border restrictions were extended. Large scale layoffs of its global staff will start this week, the company said.

"Unfortunately, COVID-19 has seen us go from having revenue of NZ$5.8 billion to what is shaping up to be less than NZ$500 million annually based on the current booking patterns we are seeing," Chief Executive Officer Greg Foran said in an email to staff and customers. "This has the potential to be catastrophic for our business unless we take some decisive action."

Air New Zealand is an example of the dire situation facing airlines across the world due to curbs on travel to control the spread of the virus. "We have had to cut more than 95 percent of our flights here in New Zealand and around the world. The only flights remaining are in place to keep supply lines open and transport options for essential services personnel," Foran added. Earlier in March, the New Zealand government offered the airline a NZ$900 million ($540.99 million) lifeline to keep it in the air.

The company also noted that "every dollar we use from this loan facility comes with interest (more than double current interest rates for a household mortgage) and must be re-paid." "Burdening our airline with massive debt would significantly lessen our ability to compete with airlines emerging from COVID-19," said Foran.

He also said that in a year's time he expects staffing levels to be 30% smaller than it is currently. ($1 = 1.6636 New Zealand dollars)


TRENDING

OPINION / BLOG / INTERVIEW

Rethinking Rural Livelihoods in the Times of COVID-19

The reverse migration caused by COVID 19 pandemic has put an additional burden of about one crore people on Indian villages particularly in the states of Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Bengal and Odisha. Besides increasing the risk of spreading the ...

‘Discounted Deaths’ and COVID 19: Anthropology of Death and Emotions

Death is a social event rather than the mere cessation of biological functions. As seen by anthropologists, death is not just physical but intensely social, cultural, and political....

Indigenous knowledge of communities a must for maximizing impact of community work

Generally, it has been observed that the majority of the academicians in higher education institutions neglect the wisdom of community people and throw their weight around thinking that they know everything and the community knows nothing. ...

In rebuking FBR, Pakistan’s courts take a stand for public health

The system, if implemented effectively, will allow Pakistans revenue service to combat the illicit trade in tobacco products and potentially add hundreds of millions of dollars to the states budget each year. ...

Videos

Latest News

Time given to vacate hostels extended to June end by UoH

The University of Hyderabad on Tuesday extended till June end, the time given to students to vacate the hostels, a day after some protested circular asking hostlers to vacate them within a week and return to their homes as inter-state trave...

PM, Trump hold telephonic talks; discuss Sino-India border row among other issues

The border standoff between India and China, the ongoing civil disturbances in the US, and need for reforms in the WHO were among a host of issues that Prime Minister Narendra Modi and US President Donald Trump discussed during a telephonic...

U.S. attorney general asked for protesters to be pushed back -Washington Post

U.S. Attorney General William Barr asked for protesters to be pushed back from Washingtons Lafayette Square on Monday after finding a previous decision to widen the security perimeter around the White House had not been acted upon, the Wash...

Chargers coach Lynn 'pissed off,' wants change

As protests continue across the country more than a week after the death of George Floyd, Chargers head coach Anthony Lynn opened up about his mounting frustration in an interview with the Los Angeles Times. Im angry, Im pissed off and I do...

Give Feedback