Turkey’s national carrier, Turkish Airlines, plans to slash pilot salaries by 50% as well as reduce the salaries of other employees. The move seeks to increase its finances after most of its fleet was grounded due to the global COVID-19 pandemic.
According to Ali Kemal Tatlibay, chairman of the Hava-Is union that represents almost 75% of the airline’s 30,000 workers, the airline plans to “undo” the wage boost implemented in 2018, when the Turkish currency depreciated 28% against the dollar.
Bloomberg reports that Turkish Airlines has $1.1 billion in debt repayments due this year from its total debt of $9.6 billion.
Turkish Airlines is the national flag carrier airline of Turkey. As of August 2019, it operated scheduled services to 315 destinations in Europe, Asia, Africa, and the Americas, making it the largest mainline carrier in the world by number of passenger destinations. The airline serves more destinations non-stop from a single airport than any other airline in the world and flies to 126 countries. With an operational fleet of 24 cargo aircraft, the airline’s cargo division serves 82 destinations.