Is the Emirates Group's New Salary Hike a Game-Changer for Employee Welfare?

Abhishek Nayar

02 Jul 2024

In a decisive move to enhance employee welfare, the Emirates Group has sanctioned a 4% salary increase, effective from July 1, 2024. This comprehensive salary hike encompasses base salaries, transportation allowances, UAE national allowances, and adjustments to flight crew working hours.

Substantial Benefits Package

In addition to the salary hike, the Emirates Group has announced a substantial increase in various allowances:

  • Subsistence and Accommodation Allowances: A boost of up to 15%, ensuring employees have more financial support for their daily needs.
  • Maternity and Paternity Leave: Paid maternity leave is extended from 60 to 90 days, with paid nursing breaks for new mothers increasing from one to two hours daily. Paid paternity leave also sees a rise from five to 10 working days, reflecting a progressive stance on family support.
  • Education Support Allowance: Set to increase by 10% effective September 1, 2024, aiding employees in managing educational expenses for their children.

Communication and Implementation

The revised base salaries and fixed allowances will be detailed in contractual amendment letters, which are scheduled to be issued on July 22, 2024. This approach ensures transparency and clarity for all employees regarding their new compensation packages.

Expanding Workforce

The Emirates Group is also ramping up its global recruitment efforts, expanding its workforce by 10% to 112,406 employees. This is a notable increase from the 102,379 employees at the close of the previous fiscal year, indicating the addition of over 10,000 new positions. This expansion reflects the Group’s commitment to growth and its proactive stance in addressing workforce needs.

Record-Breaking Fiscal Year

These enhancements come on the heels of a record fiscal year for the Emirates Group. The company reported a significant profit of AED 18.7 billion (US$5.1 billion) for the year ending March 31, 2024. This marked a 71% surge from the previous year’s earnings of AED 10.9 billion (US$3.0 billion). Concurrently, the Group reported a 15% increase in revenue, soaring to AED 137.3 billion (US$37.4 billion), and achieved a record cash balance of AED 47.1 billion (US$12.8 billion), marking an 11% rise year-over-year.


The Emirates Group’s strategic salary enhancements and expanded benefits package are a testament to its commitment to employee welfare and organizational growth. By investing in its workforce, the Group not only bolsters its reputation as an employer of choice but also positions itself for sustained success in the competitive aviation industry.

This move by the Emirates Group is likely to set a benchmark for employee welfare in the aviation industry, ensuring that it remains at the forefront of global aviation giants. The comprehensive benefits package and workforce expansion reflect a balanced approach to employee satisfaction and corporate growth. As the Emirates Group continues to break new ground, its employees can look forward to a more supportive and rewarding work environment.

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Akasa Air: Flying High with Service Excellence and Ambitious Expansion Plans

Abhishek Nayar

02 Jul 2024

In the bustling aviation landscape of India, a new player has quickly made its mark. Akasa Air, which took its maiden flight in August 2022, has grown its fleet to 24 Boeing 737 MAX planes and now operates over 900 flights weekly. Despite being less than two years old, the airline has already carved out a niche for itself, capturing a 4.8% domestic market share as of May 2024.

Focus on Service Excellence and Cost Leadership

At the helm of Akasa Air is Vinay Dube, a leader who believes in focusing on the airline's strengths rather than the competition. "I don't think about competition and certainly don't think about it in encouraging or discouraging terms. If we focus on ourselves, the market is big enough for us to succeed," Dube stated in a recent interview with PTI.

The airline's strategy revolves around service excellence and cost leadership. Dube emphasizes that the key to their success lies in delivering superior service while maintaining cost efficiency. This approach not only enhances the customer experience but also ensures the airline's financial sustainability.

International Expansion on the Horizon

Akasa Air is not just content with dominating the domestic market; it has ambitious plans for international expansion. The airline already operates flights to Doha and Riyadh and is set to commence services to Abu Dhabi from July 11. Additionally, ticket sales for Jeddah have begun, and the airline has secured traffic rights for Kuwait and Medina.

Dube's vision for Akasa Air includes a significant increase in its fleet size. Over the next eight years, more than 200 aircraft are expected to join the airline's ranks, with a firm order for 226 Boeing 737 MAX aircraft already in place. This expansion will enable Akasa Air to extend its reach further and cater to a growing number of international travelers.

A Customer-Centric Approach

A cornerstone of Akasa Air's strategy is its commitment to providing customers with choices. The airline offers a variety of ancillary services, including the option to have pets on board. Dube explains, "Ancillaries are provided for choices. We don't want someone who doesn't want food to subsidize the person who wants food. We don't think it is fair."

This customer-centric approach ensures that passengers pay only for the services they use, enhancing their overall travel experience. Whether it's offering meal combos or individual items, Akasa Air is dedicated to meeting the diverse needs of its customers.

Ensuring Pilot Well-being

Pilot fatigue is a critical issue in the aviation industry, and Akasa Air takes it very seriously. The airline goes beyond regulatory requirements to ensure the well-being of its pilots. Dube highlights, "Building sensible rosters, managing and monitoring pilot fatigue, highest standards... these are things we are fully invested in."

By prioritizing pilot well-being, Akasa Air ensures that its operations are safe and reliable, maintaining the highest standards of safety for both passengers and crew.

On the Path to Profitability

Akasa Air's growth trajectory is not just about expansion; it's also about building a financially sustainable business. Co-founder Aditya Ghosh recently shared that the airline is on track to profitability. "We have seen greater operational reliability, best on time, lowest customer complaints, highest load factors, lowest cancellations...," he said.

Ghosh's remarks underscore the airline's focus on operational efficiency and customer satisfaction, which are key drivers of profitability. By creating a customer-focused and employee-centric organization, Akasa Air is well-positioned for long-term success.


As Akasa Air continues to spread its wings, its focus on service excellence, cost leadership, and ambitious expansion plans are setting new standards in the aviation industry. With a customer-centric approach and a commitment to pilot well-being, the airline is poised for continued growth and success. Keep an eye on Akasa Air as it soars to new heights in the skies above.

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Are Unfair Labor Practices Threatening Industrial Harmony at AIX?

Abhishek Nayar

02 Jul 2024

The Air India Express Employees Union (AIXEU), affiliated with the Bharatiya Mazdoor Sangh, has raised serious allegations against Air India Express, claiming the airline is engaging in unfair labor practices. This situation has prompted the union to seek intervention from the Chief Labor Commissioner (Central) [CLC (C)] to resolve the ongoing disputes.

Allegations and Union Actions

The union has submitted a letter to the CLC (C) dated June 28, highlighting several concerns. Among these are the issuance of charge sheets to cabin crew members who took sick leave from May 6 to 8 and the initiation of inquiries against selected union members. The AIXEU claims that these actions are detrimental to industrial relations and violate labor legislation.

The May Strike: A Turning Point

The situation escalated on May 7, when around 200 cabin crew members went on strike to protest against what they termed as mismanagement by the airline. This strike led to the cancellation of hundreds of flights, creating a significant operational disruption for the Tata Group-owned airline. In response, the management terminated the services of 25 cabin crew members and issued warnings to others.

Conciliation Efforts

The strike was called off on May 9 following a conciliation meeting convened by the CLC (C) between the union representatives and the airline management. The termination letters were subsequently withdrawn. However, despite these efforts, the union claims that the management's monopolistic and adamant behavior continues to strain industrial relations.

Union's Call for Intervention and The Broader Implications

In their June 28 letter, the union emphasized that the ongoing issues are rooted in the management's approach. They are urging the CLC (C) to intervene to prevent further deterioration of the working relationship between the cabin crew and the airline's management.

The allegations and the subsequent actions by both the union and the management highlight a critical issue within the airline industry: the balance between operational efficiency and fair labor practices. The outcome of this conflict could set a precedent for how similar disputes are handled in the future.

Conclusion and What's Next?

The ongoing dispute between Air India Express and its cabin crew union underscores the need for a balanced approach to labor relations. As the situation develops, the role of the CLC (C) will be crucial in ensuring a fair resolution that upholds both the rights of the employees and the operational needs of the airline.

Will the intervention of the Chief Labor Commissioner help in resolving the issues amicably, or will the tensions escalate further? The aviation industry and stakeholders will be closely watching this unfolding drama, which serves as a critical reminder of the importance of fair labor practices in maintaining industrial harmony.

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Boeing’s Financial Woes and Worker Strikes Loom Large

Abhishek Nayar

01 Jul 2024

Boeing is grappling with significant challenges following a mid-air panel blowout on an Alaska Airlines 737 MAX jet on January 5. This incident has not only affected the company's production but also its financial standing. Boeing’s Chief Financial Officer recently stated that the company anticipates burning rather than generating cash in 2024, with no increase in deliveries expected for the second quarter. Amid these troubles, Boeing is also facing mounting pressure from its workforce, who are demanding better working conditions and benefits.

IAM Workers Push for Better Terms

The International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM), representing over 30,000 workers in Washington state, is at the forefront of this push. IAM members are seeking substantial improvements in their retirement benefits and wage increases exceeding 40% over the next three to four years. According to Jon Holden, President of IAM’s District 751, workers are prepared to strike if necessary to achieve these goals.

"We are going to maximize this opportunity no matter what," Holden emphasized in a recent interview. "Our members want an agreement; they want a good agreement but they are willing to strike if they have to."

Upcoming Strike Vote and Contract Expiry

IAM workers are scheduled to vote for a strike authorization mandate on July 17. However, they cannot commence a strike before their contract expires on September 12. This timeline places Boeing in a precarious position as it attempts to navigate its ongoing crisis while also negotiating with a determined workforce.

Rally at Renton Plant

In a show of solidarity and resolve, IAM workers held a noisy rally on Tuesday at Boeing's Renton plant, coinciding with a media event intended to showcase quality improvements at the factory. This rally underscored the workers’ frustration and their readiness to take action if their demands are not met.

Stalled Negotiations

Holden disclosed that negotiations with Boeing have yet to resolve any significant points, with the company pushing back on union demands for higher wages and a seat on Boeing's board of directors. "They're not open to it at this point," Holden said regarding the board seat. "But it's important for us to continue to push because it is about ensuring that those at the highest level of this company understand that they are missing the voice of workers."

Sanctions and Apologies

In a related development, U.S. investigators sanctioned Boeing for revealing details of the panel blowout probe during the media event at the Renton plant, prompting the company to issue an apology. This incident further complicates Boeing’s efforts to project an image of control and improvement in the face of adversity.

Unclear Factory Improvements

Despite Boeing’s claims of factory improvements and a 90-day plan submitted to the Federal Aviation Administration to enhance quality, Holden remains skeptical. "I don't see a difference," he remarked. "I haven't seen the 90-day plan yet. We're still trying to get a copy of it."

Boeing responded by stating that Holden had been hosted multiple times at the factory to review safety and quality plans, and that his feedback was considered. Nevertheless, the lack of visible changes and ongoing dissatisfaction among workers highlight the gap between Boeing’s assurances and the reality on the ground.


As Boeing struggles to recover from its recent setbacks, the looming threat of a strike by IAM workers adds another layer of complexity to the company’s challenges. The coming months will be crucial for Boeing as it attempts to balance financial recovery, production improvements, and labor negotiations. The outcome of these efforts will significantly impact Boeing's future and its ability to navigate through these turbulent times.

With Inputs from Reuters

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European Commission Approves €1.3 Billion Aid for SAS

Abhishek Nayar

01 Jul 2024

In a significant move to ensure the long-term viability of Scandinavian Airlines (SAS), the European Commission has approved up to €1.3 billion ($1.4 billion) in state aid. This decision follows the carrier's recent insolvency proceedings and previous failed restructuring attempts, particularly in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Background of the Approval

The European Commission's new approval considers the substantial impact of SAS's insolvency proceedings that began in 2022. The carrier struggled to restructure its operations effectively amid the COVID-19 pandemic, which severely disrupted global travel. In October 2022, the Commission had approved €833 million ($900 million) in COVID-related recapitalization. However, this aid, which involved contributions from Denmark and Sweden, was annulled by the General Court of the European Union.

In November 2023, the Commission made another attempt to reapprove the financial boost, although it had no direct impact as the financing was already provided in 2020. The current aid package of €1.3 billion is designed to support SAS's restructuring plan, which includes a contribution of €4.1 billion ($4.4 billion) from the airline itself, in the form of fresh equity and convertible debt.

Impact of State Aid on SAS and Market Dynamics

Margrethe Vestager, Executive Vice-President in charge of competition policy for the European Commission, emphasized the importance of the restructuring aid. She stated, "The restructuring aid to SAS approved today will contribute to ensuring air connectivity to and from Scandinavia to the benefit of European citizens. Our assessment showed that SAS’s restructuring plan will ensure its viability in the long term."

To minimize potential market distortions, the state aid comes with several conditions. SAS will be required to reduce its overall air transport activities, including a smaller fleet, limited ground handling and maintenance operations, and the release of several airport slots. These measures aim to limit the distortions of competition within the Single Market by reducing SAS's operational presence.

Current Operations and Market Share

Currently, SAS operates 146 planes with an additional 10 on order. The airline holds a significant market share at its main hubs, based on Cirium data from June 2024:

  • Copenhagen Kastrup (CPH) - 39%
  • Stockholm Arlanda (ARN) - 38%
  • Oslo Gardermoen (OSL) - 36%

The exact details of the reduction in operations are not yet clear, but it is expected that SAS will scale down its activities at these primary hubs where it has a dominant presence.

Future Outlook and Market Competition

This latest approval by the Commission is a crucial step in paving the way for SAS's restructuring and ensuring its future within the European Union market. The aid will support SAS in stabilizing its operations and continuing to provide essential air connectivity across Scandinavia and beyond.

Upcoming Decisions on Airline Mergers

Looking ahead, the European Commission is also set to announce its decision on the Lufthansa-ITA Airways merger next week. This merger is currently under a Phase 2 investigation due to its potential impact on competition. The merger is expected to be approved with specific conditions to ensure fair market practices.


The European Commission's approval of €1.3 billion in state aid for SAS marks a significant effort to support the airline's restructuring and maintain competitive balance within the EU aviation market. By imposing conditions to limit market distortions, the Commission aims to ensure a fair and viable future for SAS and the broader industry. The coming weeks will also bring more developments as the Commission addresses other major airline mergers and their competitive impacts.

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Is Your Boeing 787 Safe? New EASA Directive Addresses Potential Engine Flaw

Abhishek Nayar

01 Jul 2024

The European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), as the state of design authority for the Rolls-Royce Trent 1000 engine, has issued a crucial airworthiness directive (AD) concerning the engine, which is a prominent option for the Boeing 787 family of aircraft. This directive, effective from July 12, addresses a critical safety issue identified by Rolls-Royce.

The Problem at Hand

Rolls-Royce has identified a potential risk involving the high-pressure compressor (HPC) mini-disc anti-rotation block. The concern is that this component could dislodge into the HPC assembly stages 5 and 6 discs and the rotor rear shaft (HPC rear drum) during engine operation. This condition, if undetected and uncorrected, could significantly reduce the safe life of the affected parts, potentially leading to structural failures of critical engine components.

Affected Engine Types and Exemptions

The AD affects eight different Trent 1000 engine types. However, it applies specifically to engines that have incorporated Rolls-Royce service bulletins (SB) 72-G319 or 72-G893. Engines that have the Rolls-Royce modification (mod) 72-AK645 installed either during production or during an engine shop visit, along with the applicable SB, are exempt from this directive.

Safety Measures and Inspection Requirements

Rolls-Royce's Response

To address this safety issue, Rolls-Royce has issued its non-modification service bulletin (NMSB) Trent 1000 72-AK540 Revision 2, detailing inspection instructions. EASA's AD requires operators to follow these guidelines closely.

Inspection Protocol

Operators and maintenance, repair, and overhaul (MRO) organizations must conduct repetitive borescope inspections of the HPC rear drum cavity and the cavities between each HPC rotor disk. These inspections must be performed within 800 engine flight cycles (EFC), with one EFC defined as a single takeoff and landing. Subsequent inspections must not exceed 800 EFC intervals.

If any missing or loose HPC mini-disc anti-rotation block or any foreign object is detected during an inspection, the engine must be removed from service before the next flight. Rolls-Royce will provide applicable repair instructions for such cases.

Alternative Compliance for EHM Users

For operators utilizing Rolls-Royce’s Engine Health Monitoring (EHM) service, EASA has outlined an alternative compliance method, providing flexibility in managing the inspections and ensuring the safety of operations.

Impact on Boeing 787 Operators

Current Fleet Status

According to ch-aviation data, there are currently 78 Boeing 787-8 aircraft equipped with the eight affected Trent 1000 engine types. It remains unclear how many of these aircraft have the mod 72-AK645 applied. The last Boeing 787 delivered with one of these engines was to EL AL, registered as 4X-ERC, in February 2020.

Notable Cases

The directive also covers two ex-Norwegian Boeing 787s that were scrapped at Glasgow Prestwick Airport (PIK), making them the first commercial 787s to be parted out. Another Boeing 787-8, previously registered as N947BA, was scrapped at Roswell Air Center (ROW) in March. However, this aircraft was powered by General Electric (GE) GEnx engines, which are not affected by the directive.

Ensuring Ongoing Safety

Compliance and Vigilance

EASA's directive underscores the importance of continuous vigilance and strict adherence to inspection protocols to ensure the ongoing safety of Boeing 787 operations. By complying with these requirements, operators can effectively mitigate the risk posed by the identified issue.

Collaboration for Safety

This directive highlights the critical role of collaboration between regulatory authorities, manufacturers, and operators in maintaining aviation safety. By working together and following the outlined measures, the aviation industry can continue to uphold the highest safety standards.


The new EASA airworthiness directive for Rolls-Royce Trent 1000 engines marks a significant step in addressing potential safety concerns for Boeing 787 aircraft. Through rigorous inspections and adherence to prescribed maintenance protocols, operators can ensure the continued safety and reliability of their fleets. As always, the aviation industry's commitment to safety remains paramount, safeguarding the skies for all passengers.