Kenya Airways (KQ) has announced plans to lay off half of its pilots, a move that seeks to enable the carrier cut n costs amidst the global COVID-19 pandemic.
The layoffs, set to affect about 207 out of 414 pilots, will span across the next three years, saving the airline approximately KSh3.24 billion.
According to the airline, pilots account for 10% of its total workforce, but take home the equivalent of 45% of the overall payout to employees, translating to KSh6.48 billion. Therefore, as Business Daily reports, KQ is seeking cost savings of up to KSh63 billion based on its expenses of KSh127 billion for the year to December.
The number of KQ pilots has dropped 18% since 2014 when it incurred losses after making costly aircraft purchases, which coincided with a decline in tourist and business travel to Kenya. It was blamed on a spate of attacks by Al-Shabaab militants.