Qantas chief has no regrets over grounding fleet
SYDNEY (AFP) - Qantas chief Alan Joyce said on Friday he has no regrets about ordering the shock grounding of the Australian airline's entire fleet last year, saying it paved the way for much needed change.
Mr Joyce stunned travellers worldwide on October 29, 2011, when he pulled all Qantas planes out of the skies for 46 hours as part of a labour row with staff over plans to shift the focus of its ailing international arm to Asia.
The unprecedented shutdown had made turning the airline's fortunes around possible, including a new alliance with Emirates designed to stem huge losses on international flights he said.
If the three months of sporadic strikes by baggage handlers, pilots and engineers' unions which led to the grounding had been allowed to continue, the airline would not be in the shape it was now, Mr Joyce told The Australian newspaper.