PAL strike makes no friends

YESTERDAY Philippine Airlines (PAL) workers refused to load cargo and check in passengers following a protest against the carrier’s plan to outsource airport services.
All early flights at Manila International Airport were suspended and PAL asked police and airport authorities to help it remove the workers on strike and allow it to bring in volunteers to staff check-in counters and load food and cargo. The airline’s cabin crew and pilots were not involved with the strike and were ready to embark on the flights.
PAL’s 1 October plan to begin outsourcing its non-core businesses will result in 2,400 staff being made redundant and will cost the airline 2.5 billion pesos (US$57 million). Once the dust settles however the company expects to save between $10 million and $15 million a year.
The airline posted a net loss of $10.6 million in its first quarter. IATA projected earnings for airlines in the Asian-Pacific region will fall eight per cent next year to $2.3 billion, following a 69 per cent decline this year.

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