In an effort to produce cash savings in the short to medium term, Cathay Pacific (CX, Hong Kong Int'l) says it has reached an agreement with Airbus (AIB, Toulouse Blagnac) over deferrals of its A350 order backlog but is still in "advanced" talks with Boeing (BOE, Chicago O'Hare) regarding proposed B777-9 delivery deferrals. It had expected to take delivery of 17 aircraft in 2020, including four A350-900s, three A350-1000s, six A321-200neo, and four A320-200neo.

In its interim 1H20 accounts, the Hong Kong carrier said Airbus had agreed to spread the delivery of A350-900s and A350-1000s due in 2020 and 2021, to between 2020 and 2023. Cathay Pacific had originally anticipated taking delivery of four A350-900s and three A350-1000s in 2020 followed by five -1000s in 2021. However, under its revised plan, it will now add three A350-900s and one A350-1000 in 2020 with one -900 and two -1000s due in 2021. Two more -900s and three -1000s are due in 2022 and beyond.

In addition, A321-200Ns due between 2020 and 2023 have now been spread out between 2020 and 2025. Cathay Dragon (KA, Hong Kong Int'l) had planned to add six of the type in 2020 followed by eight in 2021 and two in 2022 and beyond. However, it will now add two in 2020 (in October and November), four in 2021, and ten in 2022 and beyond. Another sixteen A321neo, though ordered by Cathay Dragon, will be operated by Cathay Pacific's low-cost subsidiary HK Express (UO, Hong Kong Int'l) with deliveries due from 2022 and beyond.

Concerning Boeing, Cathay Pacific has twenty-one B777-9s on order the first of which are due from 2022 onwards.

Overall, Cathay Pacific Group posted a net loss of HKD9.9 billion Hong Kong dollars (USD1.3 billion) for 1H20 given the impact of the COVID-19 crisis which saw passenger revenue drop to around only 1% of previous year levels. The implementation of numerous cash-preservation measures, including significant capacity reductions, executive pay cuts, two voluntary special leave schemes (with an uptake of 80% and 90% respectively), the suspension of projects and non-essential expenditure, concessions from suppliers and deferral of payments to them, and closure of foreign crew bases, Cathay Pacific Group was able to bring down its monthly losses from a rate of HKD2.5-3.0 billion (USD323-387 million) per month during February to April, when it serviced a high level of customer refunds, to approximately HKD1.5 billion (USD193.5 million) per month from May whilst minimal passenger services are in place.