Friday, November 6, 2020

The Big Read in short: Can SIA fly high again?


SIA recorded its first full-year loss of S$212 million for the 12 months ending March 31, after staying profitable throughout its 48-year history. Earlier in September, it announced plans to cut around 4,300 positions, affecting around 2,400 staff.

26 September, 2020

Each week, TODAY’s long-running Big Read series delves into the trends and issues that matter. This week, we look at the challenges faced by Singapore Airlines amid the Covid-19 crisis and how it can recover post-pandemic. This is a shortened version of the full feature,​ which can be found here.

  • Covid-19 had hit SIA like a bolt from the blue, at a time when it was facing mounting competitive pressures
  • The pandemic hit SIA squarely on its core business model of premium, long-haul international flights — the first to be cancelled and likely the last to be restored
  • Changi Airport air hub status is not guaranteed post-pandemic, as technological trends and alternative hubs pose a threat
  • When the restart comes, SIA will need ready and trained personnel to jump on the wagon
  • Global debate ongoing over the role of flag carriers, as the aviation industry is expected to consolidate in the months and years ahead.

Commentary: Biden risks being a lame duck president if he wins

Should he win, Joe Biden could be caught between two irreconcilable forces – a stubbornly entrenched Trumpian right and an embittered Democratic left, says the Financial Times’ Edward Luce.

 Edward Luce

WASHINGTON: Damaged liberal hearts may briefly be lifted by the fact that Joe Biden received more votes than anyone in US presidential history – until they find out Donald Trump came in a historic second.

He even exceeded Barack Obama’s peak 2008 tally.

The real lesson from Tuesday’s record turnout is that America is bitterly, energetically and almost evenly divided. That is the salient background to Mr Biden’s equivocal mandate.

The question is what a President Biden could do with it. The answer is much less than even he – the most moderate of Democratic contenders – would have hoped.