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Jet Airways May Lay Off 100 Pilots

Posted in Cockpit Crew News, Jet Airways1 comment

Private carrier Jet Airways is expected to lay off 100 of its 240 expatriate pilots, airline sources said. As a first step, the private carrier has decided not to renew the service contracts of 27 pilots.

The move comes soon after the airline had to succumb to the political pressure to withdraw its retrenched cabin crew last month. Jet has been looking at cutting costs and right-sizing the organisation after it rationalised its fleet and cut routes, following the recent slowdown in the aviation industry.

Expatriate salaries are at least 40 per cent higher than those of their Indian counterparts as a thumb rule in the industry. There has been discontent among Jet’s Indian pilots after the airline reduced their salaries.

Jet confirmed that notices have been served on some of the expatriate pilots. “We have served notices on some of the expatriate pilots, who were on contract with the airline, as their contracts have ended,” said a Jet Airways’ spokeswoman. The pilots, whose service contracts have been terminated, are from the classic fleet – the Boeing 737 aircraft. The airline has grounded five of these aircraft.

Jet is also likely to do away with about 20 expatriate employees in the maintenance and engineering division.

Recently, Kingfisher Airlines, which had announced an alliance with Jet Airways to cut costs, too had reduced salaries of its pilots.

The exact reduction in the number of expatriate employees will be clear once the airline decides on the fate of its wide-body aircraft – the Boeing 777-300ER. Jet will be grounding or sub-leasing the wide-body aircraft (at least six of them after it stops the Mumbai-Shanghai-San Francisco flight in January). The number could be between 75 and 100 more pilots, depending on whether the airline goes for a wet sub-lease (where the cabin and cockpit crew is also a part of the lease agreement) or a dry lease. Jet is in the process of finalising a lease agreement for five of its Boeing 777s with a Turkish airline.

Jet has the highest number of expatriate pilots, around 240 of the total 1,000-strong pilots. It had hired them primarily for the ATRs and as commanders for its wide-body aircraft as it had planned aggressive international expansion earlier. The airline has often been under fire for hiring expatriates in key positions.

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  1. hey r thr any vacancies for FRESHER PILOTS…???

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