AVIATION | Staff Reporter, Singapore

Cathay Pacific's merger hits roadblock from aviation regulator: report

This comes after some of its staff attended the anti-government protests in Hong Kong.

China’s aviation regulator may make it difficult for Hong Kong’s Cathay Pacific Airways to merge regional arm Cathay Dragon into its main brand because of infractions during last year’s pro-democracy protests, two sources told Reuters.

The airline is looking to cut costs, streamline marketing and consolidate pilot contracts around Cathay Pacific and low-cost arm HK Express, the sources said on condition of anonymity.

Rival Singapore Airlines is doing the same with regional arm SilkAir and budget arm Scoot.

However, the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) would view such a move as an expansion and could block Cathay from keeping access to 20 mainland routes flown only by Dragon.

China’s aviation regulator stepped up inspections of Cathay planes last fall after warning the airline that staff participating in anti-government protests in Hong Kong would no longer be allowed to fly to mainland destinations or even in Chinese airspace.

Read more from Reuters.

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