Malaysia Airlines (MH, Kuala Lumpur Int'l) parent Malaysia Aviation Group has offered early retirement to its employees as it continues negotiations with creditors and lessors, the national news agency Bernama reported after seeing an application form for the scheme.

The plan is being aimed at employees across the group, including subsidiaries Firefly (FY, Penang) and MASwings (MY, Kota Kinabalu) and is targeted at Malaysia-based employees aged 45 and over who have been in the company for at least 10 years.

The scheme appears to be “fair” in view of the group’s moves to pare down operations at Malaysia Airlines, Ismail Nasaruddin, president of the National Union of Flight Attendants Malaysia, told the news agency.

“The offer is only for three months’ salary, but if the outcome doesn’t match the numbers they are looking for then more drastic measures may be implemented such as termination or retrenchment,” he said.

Malaysia Aviation Group currently has a 12,000-strong workforce, according to Bernama.

As previously reported, the group has warned lessors that it is unlikely to be able to meet payments beyond November and that if restructuring talks with them are unsuccessful then its owner, the state sovereign wealth fund Khazanah Nasional, will force it into a winding down process.

On October 27, Universiti Malaysia Sarawak lecturer Shazali Abu Mansor urged the government to allocate funds in the upcoming 2021 budget to train and reskill those made redundant from the aviation, travel, and tourism sectors. The budget is scheduled to be debated in the parliament on November 6.

AirAsia Group cut its staff in early June by more than 250, and on October 9 it confirmed that another 10% of its 24,000-strong workforce would follow. Malindo Air (OD, Kuala Lumpur Int'l), meanwhile, is reported to have cut about 2,200 jobs, more than half of its workforce of 3,200 amid plans to reduce its fleet to 11 aircraft. According to the ch-aviation fleets advanced module, 11 of Malindo Airways’ fleet of 27 aircraft are currently active.