Home » Aviation » Competition, labor woes cut cargo volumes at PAL

CARGO volume at Philippine Airlines (PAL) is declining due to stiff competition as well as labor row concerns.

“PAL is in a unique situation… But at this point, we are now concerned over abrupt decline in volume due to competition … rather than the labor row,” PAL international cargo sales manager Jerry Calaluan told PortCalls.

The airline’s cabin crew are threatening to go on strike due to PAL’s alleged unfair labor practices.

“We are time and again reviewing our processes and rates to remain competitive in order to get bigger cargo volume from Philippine exporters and importers,” Calaluan said.

“PAL is constantly making guarantees to our clients that the current labor row will not severely affect cargo operations and measures have been put into place to ensure minimal shipment delays,” he added.

Still, Calaluan admitted some regular clients have been taking a cautious stance and not increasing their volumes due to the labor woes.

No Christmas effect

From a 20% hike in volume posted since the latter part of last year, PAL’s volumes are now decreasing. The expected surge in the run-up to Christmas has not materialized, suggesting a slow finish for the airline this year.

Freight rates have remained friendly but not as favorable as in the early part of the year, making it difficult for PAL to post bigger margins.

Last week, PAL realigned its Australian operations with the temporary suspension of flights to and from Brisbane effective October 31, 2010.

PAL’s five times a week flights to Melbourne will be adjusted to four times weekly, while flights to Sydney remain unaffected with five times weekly services.

PAL said marketing considerations and the onset of the lean season required changes in its Australia operations.

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