Foster to pilot RBA
Brunei's government has named a former Cathay Pacific Airways executive as head of state-owned Royal Brunei Airlines (RBA).
UK national Peter Foster took over as chief executive on 1 September. He replaces RBA's top manager, executive director Pengiran Ali Ahmad, who resigned earlier this year.
Foster was until early 1999 Cathay's general manager for Taiwan and the Philippines. He left the carrier to set up a consultancy called Regent Star Services, with other former Cathay executives, which was hired by Philippine Airlines (PAL) early in 1999 to help turn that troubled carrier around.
Although Foster and the rest of the Regent Star team won praise for drawing up a successful restructuring plan for PAL, the executives ran into opposition from the carrier's chairman and majority owner, Lucio Tan, and their contracts were severed early. Foster has since worked in Europe and the Middle East.
RBA has admitted financial difficulties, and the Brunei government has, vetoed any more state funds for the carrier, which is thought never to have made a profit.