FILE PHOTO: Tourists take Luxor-bound EgyptAir flight from Cairo International Airport in Cairo, Egypt October 9, 2019. REUTERS
EgyptAir has decided to slash the salaries of its high-ranking employees by 10% starting this month in light of the economic impact of the coronavirus on the airline industry.
The decision will affect chairmen of companies affiliated with the state-owned flag carrier, their deputies, advisors and department heads, pilots, and maintenance engineers, according to letter from chairman Roshdy Zakariya to employees published Sunday.
“The policy of cutting all administrative and operational expenses will be applied to all the company’s sectors," he added.
The austerity measure will be reviewed when operations improve and the crisis subsides.
The company has worked since the beginning of the virus outbreak to avoid any decisions that would affect staff members or their financial rights, Zakariya said.
“But unfortunately, the situation has become very critical, especially since there is no specific date for the world to overcome this crisis.”
Egypt grounded all international flights to and from the country on 19 March as part of unprecedented measures to curtail the spread of the outbreak.
EgyptAir has continued operating domestic trips and repatriation flights for Egyptian nationals stranded abroad.
The dire situation for the aviation industry has prompted Egyptian private airline companies to appeal to the government in late March to intervene to stop the economic losses caused by the coronavirus outbreak.
On Saturday, Egypt’s finance ministry said it will lend EgyptAir EGP 2 billion ($127.39 million) to help it tackle the impact of the pandemic on its operations.
The travel halt has hurt the country’s vital tourism sector – a major source of hard currency, leading to estimated losses of $1 billion per month, according to the tourism ministry.
Last month, the International Air Transport Association said Egypt’s airline industry faces a potential loss in revenue of $1.6 billion and 9.5 million fewer passengers in 2020 due to the coronavirus crisis.