China Airlines to raise salaries by 2% this year

Taipei, China Airlines (CAL), one of the leading international carriers in Taiwan, said Monday that it will soon implement an average 2 percent pay increase in recognition of the hard work put in by its employees over the past year.

At a meeting Monday, CAL board members approved the average 2 percent wage increase, which followed a 3 percent hike in 2018.

In addition, the company said its board also agreed to give each CAL employee a year-end bonus of 2.2 months' of salary, plus a cash gift of NT$10,000 (US$325), ahead of the Lunar New Year holiday that starts Feb. 2.

Commenting on CAL's announcements, Transportation and Communications Minister Lin Chia-lung said that once companies like CAL are showing a profit, they should pass on some of the benefits to their employees. The transportation ministry is one of CAL's major shareholders.

The CAL worker's union, however, said that while the airline had posted a record high annual revenue in 2018, its latest wage hike and year-end bonus offers were lower than last year.

The union said it had asked for the equivalent of four months' pay in year-end bonuses, as Taiwanese rival EVA Airways is offering, but CAL said rising competition from low-cost carriers, growing fuel costs and a decline in passenger loads across the Taiwan Strait had affected its bottom line last year.

The company has not yet released its earnings results for 2018 but has posted a record high NT$170.85 billion in consolidated sales, an annual increase of 9.43 percent, which market analysts said reflected rising demand and higher fares.

In the first nine months of 2018, CAL's earnings per share was NT$0.22, compared with NT$0.17 over the same period the previous year.

In 2018, CAL gave each of its employees a bonus of three months' salary plus a cash prize of about NT$10,000.

On Tuesday, CAL shares fell 2.29 percent to close at NT$10.65 on the Taiwan Stock Exchange, while the benchmark weighted index ended up 0.05 percent at 9,894.66 points.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel