It is a bad move, commercially, unless your view of commerciality is short term harvesting of profit.
Marketing 101 says it is far easier/less costly to sell to existing clients, than to recruit new ones.
What is the opportunity cost of providing a differentiator to your (aggressive and capable) competition?
The airline business is highly competitive and pissing off a significant number of your high yield clients is crazy.
BA seeks to make high price points, I don’t think the business product is worth it on short haul and I will be looking closely at how Etihad works for me next month; unless it is very bad, I will stick with them in the future. Really, what is great about NCW apart from the seat?
Pulling routes and then removing a valued privilege = find a better solution and I think I have for my main ME route.
BTW, don’t get a Priority Pass before you look at the Airport Angel offer.