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SIA considering corporate action with Temasek's support

NATIONAL carrier Singapore Airlines (SIA) is considering a corporate action supported by Temasek Holdings to tide through the Covid-19 outbreak, Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat announced on Thursday.

Noting that SIA had requested a trading halt earlier on Thursday, Mr Heng said that he has been informed that the company will be making an announcement in due course.

“I welcome Temasek’s decision to lend support to SIA... Through the government’s support for the aviation sector, and if necessary more direct support measures, we will make sure that SIA is able to come through this in good shape,” he said.

“Ultimately, this is about preserving the status of our air hub, so that we can emerge stronger from this crisis. Riding out this storm will require patience… I’m sure our air hub will be able to emerge stronger,” he said.

On Monday, March 23, SIA announced that it was cutting 96 per cent of its scheduled capacity till end-April and grounding 138 out of 147 SIA and SilkAir aircraft. 

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In addition, the company also announced in a staff note that SIA management will take a second round of pay cuts. Chief executive Goh Choon Phong will take a 30 per cent pay cut from April 1, instead of 15 per cent as previously announced. Other affected senior staff will take cuts of between 10 and 25 per cent, while SIA board members will take a 30 per cent cut in their fees.

SIA had also implemented cost-cutting measures, such as varying days of compulsory no-pay leave every month for pilots, executives and associates, and furlough for staff on re-employment contracts.

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