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We will definitely support Cathay Pacific – Qatar Airways

May 18, 2020 Headline News No Comments Email Email

Qatar Airways, the third-largest shareholder in Cathay Pacific, said it was willing to provide an equity injection into Hong Kong’s financially battered flagship carrier if approached, according to the South China Morning Post.“Cathay is a well-established company and as a shareholder and if the carrier were to approach us for an equity injection, we will definitely support them,” Al Baker, Group CEO of the Doha-based carrier told the Post.

The airline holds a 9.99 per cent stake in Cathay. Cathay said in March it had HK$20 billion (US$2.58 billion) in unrestricted liquidity and subsequently raised HK$5.45 billion in the sale and leaseback of six Boeing 777 planes.

Qatar Airways, which flies to 170 destinations worldwide in normal times, would be a smaller one “only in the short term”, Baker said. The carrier is for instance one of the few to return to a full flight schedule to mainland China.

Having grounded most of its fleet, it said last week it would gradually build up its flying schedule, aiming for 80 destinations by the end of June.

Of its around 110 daily freighter flights, up to 25 a day are going to or from China – a mix of the carrier’s 26 dedicated cargo planes and empty passenger planes.“There is a huge demand for cargo, not only from China but … from all over the world,” said Baker.

The Qatari carrier has taken positions in other leading airlines, adding a 5 per cent stake in China Southern Airlines, a 25.1 per cent holding in British Airways-parent IAG and a 10 per cent stake in South American carrier Latam.

Edited by Ian McIntosh

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