Ethiopian Airlines CEO says no permanent employee is laid off despite loss of $550 million in revenue due to Coronavirus pandemic
April 7, 2020
Ethiopian Airlines CEO, Tewelde Gebremariam, on Tuesday, said that the airline had lost 550 million dollars in revenue due to the Coronavirus pandemic.
In a press conference that he had regarding the impact of the disease on Ethiopian Airlines and the aviation industry, he said that the Coronavirus disease has primarily affected the sector.
Currently, the airline has suspended commercial flights to 90 percent of its international destinations, which means that it is flying only to 10 percent of its international destinations. On March 31, Ethiopian Airlines announced that it had suspended passengers’ flights to 80 destinations around the world.
Ethiopian Airlines has about 110 destinations around the world. Mr. Tewolde said that the airline is flying passengers only to 19 international destinations, as reported by state-affiliated Fana Broadcasting Corporations (FBC).
The case with cargo flights and maintenance departments is different. The CEO said that those departments are doing well.
In terms of layoffs, he said that Ethiopian Airlines is not slashing the jobs of permanent employees. But contract and temporary workers are laid off, he admitted. The layoff is, in the words of Mr. Tewelde, temporary.
The Airlines issued a statement which is published on its website, saying news of employees layoffs as “fake news.”
“Ethiopian Airlines strongly refutes the fake news which appeared in some social and traditional media and which wrongly states as if Ethiopian Airlines is laying off employees. Ethiopian Airlines has not laid off any regular employee and has no plans. Needless to mention that the airline industry is passing through unprecedented crisis caused by the COVID-19 and Ethiopian Airlines is not an exception. Ethiopian Airlines is losing significant part of its regular revenue. However; there is no plan to reduce regular employees,” said the statement.
This week, Addis Admas, a local newspaper, reported about layoffs that disenchanted the employees ( borkena has published a story about it.) While the report said that it was contract workers that are laid off, laid-off employees complain that expatriate contract staff are still working.
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