Cathay Pacific Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Rupert Hogg, has resigned amid Hong Kong protests. Augustus Tang has been appointed as the new CEO, effective from August 19.
Hong Kong is facing its 11th week of demonstrations as protesters demand greater democratic rights. Hogg has said that in the current climate the airline has experienced a challenging time. Hong Kong International Airport was forced to close this week after peaceful protests turned violent causing hundreds of flight cancellations. It is one of the world’s busiest airports with 428,000 take offs and landings and 5.1m tonnes of cargo handled in 2018.
Last week, the airline said that it would not prevent its staff from joining the pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong, however, a few days later Hogg emailed all employees notifying them of the change of Cathay Pacific’s stance. The email stated the airline has a zero-tolerance approach to illegal activities and employees who support or partake in such protests will face disciplinary action. This came after increased pressure from Chinese authorities demanding the suspension of staff who took part in the demonstrations.
As a consequence of recent events, the board of directors at Cathay Pacific announced that it has accepted the resignation of Rupert Hogg as CEO and Paul Loo as Chief Customer and Commercial Officer. Augustus Tang has been appointed CEO and Ronald Lam as Chief Customer and Commercial Officer; these changes are effective from August 19.
Following from Cathay Pacific’s senior management changes. Recently acquired HK Express has also appointed a new CEO with immediate effect, Mandy Ng. Ng will take over from former CEO Ronald Lam who is now Cathay Pacific Chief Customer and Commercial Officer. Lam also assumes the Chairmanship of HK Express.
Hogg said, “It has been my honour to lead the Cathay Pacific Group over the last three years. I am confident in the future of Hong Kong as the key aviation hub in Asia. However, these have been challenging weeks for the airline and it is right that Paul and I take responsibility as leaders of the company.”
Chairman for Cathay Pacific, Slosar added, “Rupert Hogg and his team executed the three-year Transformation Programme which has been important to Cathay Pacific’s recovery and provides a strong platform for continued development. However, recent events have called into question Cathay Pacific’s commitment to flight safety and security and put our reputation and brand under pressure. We therefore think it is time to put a new management team in place who can reset confidence.”
Source: Cathay Pacific Cargo