In cost cutting, airlines set to slash pilots’ salaries

October 28th, 2008 - 7:06 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Oct 28 (IANS) The crisis-hit private airlines, which are contemplating different ways to reduce operating costs, may cut pilots’ salary soon, sources said Tuesday.The highly paid pilots, who were in high demand till recently, are now becoming a major concern for the airline industry, which is struggling to cope with the adverse economic environment.

An average salary of a qualified pilot working for a scheduled airline in India is at least Rs.3 million per annum.

Airline sources said Jet Airways may cut salaries of its pilots by over 20 percent in November. But when contacted, a Jet spokesperson said nothing has been decided in this regard.

Earlier Oct 18, another leading private air operator, Kingfisher Airlines, cut the salaries of its 50 trainee co-pilots.

Indian airlines also are planning to get rid of foreign pilots who are proving very expensive. The number of foreign pilots has come down from 944 in February this year to less than 900 now, said an airline official.

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