The Business Times

MAS mulls 15-20% job cuts

Redundancies seen in airline's new business model that is being fine-tuned

Anita Gabriel
Published Tue, Aug 12, 2014 · 10:00 PM
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[SINGAPORE] Malaysia Airlines (MAS), a state-owned carrier tottering on hefty losses and reeling from twin tragedies, could lay off 15-20 per cent of its plump workforce to slash cost as part of a deep restructuring to revive the ailing airline.

The Business Times understands that the airline, which major owner Khazanah Nasional has only just proposed to buy out and delist from the Malaysian stock exchange, is in the midst of collating detailed data which will be "reality tested" to make the tough decision on who stays and who goes.

"MAS's new business model that is being fine-tuned will not require the staff strength it now has and there will be redundancies. There are many, not in the few hundreds, but some thousand or so who may be let go. It will also involve those holding senior positions who have made some poor day-to-day decisions," said a reliable source. Staff cuts, deemed a low hanging fruit in keeping MAS afloat, appear to be inevitable for the airline which has a bloated workforce of 19,577 employees (as at end 2013) but it's a painful decision it has long evaded, not least for fear of a political backlash.

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