No end appears in sight to the dispute between Cathay Pacific Airways and its pilots. At a meeting in Hong Kong on 18 July, the pilots voted 95% in favour of continuing industrial action in pursuit of improved pay and rostering. They also agreed that pilots sacked by Cathay during the dispute should remain members of the Hong Kong Aircrew Officers Association (HKAOA). Some of these pilots sit on the negotiating team. However, Cathay will only deal with employees, creating yet another obstacle to a return to the negotiating table.

HKAOA says it will negotiate when Cathay provides the information it wants about actual flying hours being worked under the contract previously agreed. Cathay imposed a new contract after sacking 52 pilots earlier in July.

Despite Cathay's belligerence, HKAOA does not plan to step up its work-to-rule action, which is causing about a quarter of all flights to be delayed.

Cathay has restored service to most destinations suspended when the industrial action began three weeks ago, with New York due to be reinstated on 1 August. After then, only Karachi and Manchester will remain suspended.

Eleven aircraft remain chartered from Chinese airlines, and Cathay is optimistic the rest will be returned over the next few weeks.

Source: Flight International