Cathay Pacific Chairman resigns (Sept 4)Back to Forum
Recently the carrier’s CEO Rupert Hogg resigned.
Just a few mins ago it was announced that Cathay Pacific’s Chairman John Slosar (who has been with Swire for decades) has also resigned.4 Sep 2019
John Slosar was due to retire soon in any case.
Patrick Healy is a Swire veteran who joined Swire as a cadet in 1988.
He currently is Executive Director-Beverages Division at Swire Pacific Ltd. (who are a significant Coca Cola bottler worldwide) and a main board director of Swire.
Another corporate safe pair of clean hands with little recent direct involvement in the airline industry or Cathay Pacific.4 Sep 2019
John Slosar’s resignation may not be the end of changes at CX reports Forbes.5 Sep 2019
I don’t read in the Forbes piece anything that indicates any dramatic senior executive changes at Cathay in the near future not can I find references to this any of the more reliable sources of airline information.
I may be proved to be incorrect but my opinion is that more immediate changes are very unlikely and would be ill advised at this time when the steady hand of experienced Swire executives is needed.
The current management team is not young with the CEO being at retirement age and I would expect significant changes in this team in a couple of years time after the very significant damage caused by the China Government’s aggressive intervention has been contained and overcome.6 Sep 2019
Following on from the determination of the Chinese Communist Party neither to forget China’s history of colonial humiliation nor to turn down the opportunity to give one in the eye to the country from whence much of this humiliation stemmed, are all gweiolo hongs in HK now expected to kowtow to the new imperial masters in Beijing?
This post is only partly tongue in cheek. Whilst working for the HK Government before the 1997 handover, I was commissioned to do a survey of European investor sentiment towards HK post-handover. To this day, I recall an interview with a Dutch trader in Amsterdam who had dealt with China dating back to before the Cultural Revolution. He was remarkably blunt when he told me that, given half a chance, the Chinese Communists will have the shirts off both our backs and they will have no second thoughts about turning the tables on the West – if they were allowed to do so. I always regarded say to anyone who thinks that China has forgotten any of its historical humiliations to spend an afternoon at the Summer Palace outside Beijing and pay particular attention to the plaques outside each building. The Chinese take on history in full view.
CX will be made an example of – and humiliated in the process.6 Sep 2019
‘This post is only partly tongue in cheek.’
It would be rather interesting to which part of your post is tongue in cheek.
It seems that the Dutch trader held rather a jaded view of China as it seems perhaps do you.
My great great grandfather was a sea captain who married a chinese young lady and my family have been in Hong Kong off and on since that time
I came here myself penniless in nineteen seventy four,built several substantial businesses. Opening our first factory in China 37 years ago.
Next week my eldest son who is in the business will marry a beautiful Hong Kong Chinese girl and thus the circle repeats itself
My story is the total opposite to that related by the jaded Dutch trader as almost without fail we have received assistance, encouragement and kindness from the ‘Communists’ as have many of my European friends.
As for CX; Swire have been in China for well over 100 years and prospered, built many business in the mainland some working closely with Chinese partners and these activities continue without undue hindrance or onerous interference. I see it as totally illogical to suggest that the ‘Communists’ will in any material way attack Cathay Pacific – what would be the point or the logic of doing so.
The 1967 riots in Hong Kong then of course under British colonial rule were far more serious than the present difficulties with much shooting and many fatalities -perhaps not one of Britain’s finest hours.
My prediction is some-what more positive than AntonyDunns:
The current relatively minor skirmishes (when compared with say the mayhem in Paris) with mainly university students on their long summer break will pass, Cathay Pacific will still be here and prospering in twenty years as I hope will I.7 Sep 2019
I should have been more precise – but there again the CCP sees no such distinction – in saying that the Dutch trader in AMS was referring to mainland China rather than Hong Kong SAR. His view of the latter was totally different view. The issue with Hong Kong is that the rule of law (and thence of contract etc.) is overseen by an independent and impartial judiciary which underpins HK society. It is in the defence of this that millions (repeat millions) of HK citizens have been out on the streets. It is laughably inaccurate (and frankly delusional) to attempt to portray the months of protests as merely the antics of university students on their Summer holidays. I know some of those who’ve been protesting – and they are long past being university students. If that is what you genuinely believe, then I would strongly suggest that you get out of your ivory tower and head down to Admiralty, Central, Causeway Bay or go up the Nathan Road and you speak to those who are demonstrating. And there are other news sources beyond the “Global Times” which you might try looking at.
Having lived and worked in HK (going back to the mid-80s), as well as having travelled to some parts of PR China, the entire country entirely fascinates me and I have experienced both great curiosity and great kindness there. So no, I have no hangups with/about Chinese people. What I do have a substantial hangup about is the mindset of the CCP which is aggressively revanchist (speak to those in neighbouring countries) and virulently nationalist to an extent that few fully appreciate in the West. I also believe that you do not wish to understand the extent to which the CCP is requiring obeisance and fealty from corporate HK: CX is the flagship example of this policy in practice.7 Sep 2019
Anthony your comments are of a different Hong Kong that the one that I and my family actually live, walk, travel,and work in daily.
Frankley the views of an ex-colonial public servant living presumably thousands of miles away and coloured by the oft times sensationalised ‘news’ reporting do not carry a lot of weight with me or accurately reflect the situation in Hong Kong.
Perhaps once close to a million Hongkongers hit the streets and I had at that time some sympathy with their view regarding a Bill that was being needlesley hard pushed through the ligature but the current incidents long ago ceased to be about that and became a a game for 90% of the bord kids, social mistitts and few hundred hardline activists that have lurked in the shadows since pre 1997.
As it happens I live in a low rise building some 300 meters from Nathan Road travel through Admiralty station daily on the MTR and often eat in Causeway Bay. I do get a little cross with the ‘armchair experts’ who pontificate endlessly on the internet about the ‘situation’ in Hong Kong about which they have little or no current and first hand knowledge.
Cathay pacific is alive and well (if a little scuffed here and there) as is Hong Kong
1 user thanked author for this post.8 Sep 2019
My views are far from derived from the odd 30-second sound bite on a UK TV news broadcast. We have long standing friends who also live and work in HK, who are long since past the stage of being university students and are very far from being bored kids, social misfits or “hard line activists”. They are petrified of the potential consequences of Carrie Lam’s ill-considered extradition proposal and the impact upon the rule of law in HK. They would never have dreamed of becoming street protesters themselves before this proposal reared its head.
It is fascinating that whilst you are happy to throw out accusations and smear the protesters, you have conspicuously failed to address the concerns underpinning the protests. Can you explain to us all just how it is that HK’s economic, political and legal status could conceivably remain unimpaired with the proposal that even Carrie Lam now accepts is flawed? You have thrown out your accusations, you should now answer some questions. I fear that you cannot see reality and that you are simply adhering to fixed talking points. It’s called being an ideologue.8 Sep 2019
Just to put this back onto a travel basis, I have been in china for past 16 years, travelling back and forth through and staying in HK 2 or 3 times a month. I usually cross the border to SZ by car and for the first time I can remember I was help up with 101 (felt like) questions on entering, the who, why, what, where repeated several times. Bear in mind I have had a PRC resident Visa and work permit for the past 12 years. I also had similar on leaving back across to HK
Speaking the past few weeks with many other Expats in the pearl river area SZ/DG/GZ many non-Asians are being checked either at home, at work, in hotels or in public. Whilst this is not really connected to events in HK as it started earlier this year, I do know of 2 non-Asian HKID holders that say they have had to hand over their phones for inspection at SZ bay crossing point. I strongly suggest anyone travelling to the south the following advice to make life a little easier and save you time (By law you are supposed to but nobody including me ever have)
Carry copies of your passport page and visa page with you at all times
Carry some proof of address if you can such as hotel booking conformation
Use a vanilla phone or make sure you have nothing on there that can give any excuse to be held up more than is reasonable. Obvious ones would be any criticism of China or HK issues.
If you are someone who likes a bit of whacky baccy in your free time, even in a country where its legal…then don’t. Certainly in SZ and GZ the police are hitting expat/western hangouts and hair testing people for traces of drugs. You will get kicked out for partaking somewhere else up to a couple of months before the test, you will be refused entry for at least 12 months.
1 user thanked author for this post.8 Sep 2019
I have made my view of the situation clear above and am not going to continue with this exchange as it will add nothing of value to fellow business travellers and has become too political for this business travel forum.9 Sep 2019