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Exclusive: Oman Air to cut jobs to sustain operations

The reduction in headcount will apply to those who are holding positions that are no longer required based on the airline’s current level of operations.

Nishad Padiyarath
March 19, 2020

MUSCAT: Following severe impact of the coronavirus outbreak, national carrier Oman Air said it will reduce staff to sustain its operations, Abdulaziz Al Raisi, CEO of the airline said on Thursday.

In a statement issued by Al Raisi (a copy of which is available with The Arabian Stories), admitted that Oman Air’s operations have been significantly hit. “Given the impact of COVID-19 on our operations, we have had to reduce our flights, suspend routes and park plans in a way we have never had to do adhere. 

Also Read: 16,000 flights cancelled, 347,000 jobs at stake in GCC aviation industry

“With our flight operations begin significantly reduced, we will have to make difficult decisions in order to guarantee the future of our national carrier. Our revenues have declined to a point where we can no longer sustain our current level of employment,” Al Raisi said in the statement. 

“Due to circumstances beyond our control, we will have to reduce our workforce,” he said. 

Unsettling times for everyone

The reduction in headcount will apply to those who are holding positions that are no longer required based on the airline’s current level of operations. Highly-placed sources in the airline has informed that the Omani staff will not be affected.

Our revenues have declined to a point where we can no longer sustain our current level of employment

Abdulaziz Al Raisi, CEO of Oman Air

However, Al Raisi expressed confidence that airline can bring back the workforce when businesses return to normal in a few months time. “I recognize that these are unsettling times for everyone. However, I know I can count on your support and understanding during this difficult time of need for Oman Air,” Al Raisi added. 

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) on Thursday said a total of 16,000 passenger flights have been cancelled in the Middle East since the end of January as the outbreak of coronavirus has left the regional aviation industry reeling.

According the report, the aviation industry in the Gulf region is bracing for a $7 billion financial hit and the loss of up to nearly 347,000 jobs due to disruptions caused by the coronavirus. 

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