Wednesday, November 16, 2016

CHINA Offers 300k to FOREIGN AIRLINE PILOTS to Meet Demand

It’s hard to believe that there was once ever a time when citizens of the People’s Republic of China weren’t quite of a mind to travel the world as tourists seeing the sights and sounds of another country. They usually tended to stay in their own territory except when called to do so for either diplomatic or competitive purposes. That just goes to show how much everything can change even in the span of a few decades. Air travel both domestic and international is now as ingrained to Chinese lifestyle as it is anywhere else.

And that is why Chinese airlines find themselves with a shortage of qualified pilots for their passenger planes. With these companies growing exponentially, local flight trainings schools just aren’t churning out enough homegrown talent to fill openings for airline pilots. Out of necessity the Chine air carriers have decided to extend their hiring internationally, and as CNN tells it, they’ve been having great success in inviting foreign pilots to fly Chinese jetliners, all thanks to the most generous pay and fringe benefit packages ever put together for passenger aircraft pilots anywhere else in the world.

To give an example, a great many Chinese airlines are promoting salaries no lesser than US $300,000 for a year’s work of flying, absolutely tax free. And in China, such a tax break for an in- demand line of work can be such a welcome break indeed. It’s been estimated by Wasinc International, a firm that funnels qualified pilots looking for work into China, that the country’s carriers put together is in dire need of anywhere from 4,000 to 5,000 new airline pilots within the next twenty years, a staggering number to be sure.

Wasinc CEO Dave Ross explains why Chinese carriers are not sparing any expenses in acquiring even foreign blood to fly their planes. "There's not enough pilots in the world to fill the demand," he said. And that’s no exaggeration. Chinese airlines are so catching up to the demand of more of their countrymen wanting to take a trip abroad that they’ve now counted themselves among the largest quantity buyers of passenger planes from both Boeing in the US and Airbus from Europe.

Jeff Graham, a former pilot for Southern Air, definitely likes the arrangement he’d gotten for himself. "Before I was flying anywhere from 80-100 hours a month,” he recalled. “Here, I only fly 50 for pretty much three times the pay," Guo Jing, a spokesperson for Chengdu Airlines, is fairly blunt about why their company offers such hyper-competitive packages along with their fellow Chinese carriers saying, ";In China, pilots are always in short supply. And we offer high salaries because if we don't, nobody will come."

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