Thu, May 30, 2002 - Page 3 News List

Premier Yu wants CAL restructured

STAFF WRITER , WITH AGENCIES

Premier Yu Shyi-kun yesterday appointed Minister without Portfolio Tsai Ching-yen (蔡清彥) to head a special task force to come up with a plan to reform China Airlines management within one week, local media reported.

Speaking at a Cabinet meeting yesterday morning, Yu repeatedly stressed the need for the airline to improve its management efficiency. He also said that further privatization is the only way to improve CAL's aviation safety and in-house management.

The premier said that China Airlines should be restructured in six months.

Two-year deadline

Yu said that the company must carry out reforms and restructuring and be fully privatized within two years.

According to Yu, the best way to improve the company's management is to make sure that it enforces "enterprise practice," adding that all chairpersons of government-owned enterprises should take full responsibility for enterprise management.

As for the question of who should bear responsibility for the crash of flight CI611, Yu said that the government would make a decision after all the search and rescue work is completed.

The premier also promised to push forward a reform plan on the China Aviation Development Foundation (航發會, CADF) -- CAL's largest shareholder.

The airline is a joint venture between the private sector and the government-controlled CADF, which holds about 71 percent interest in the company.

Interference

Sources said that the foundation -- established with funds donated by the government and private CAL founders -- has not only had a decisive say in the make-up of the airline's board of directors but has also often interfered with its business operations, purchases of aircraft and personnel management.

CADF chief Tsay Jaw-yang (蔡兆陽) -- who is also a former minister of transportation and communications -- yesterday morning held a press conference to rebuff the barrage of criticism of CAL, saying that the airline is already a private company and that its management is appropriate.

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