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Qantas names Alan Joyce to replace Dixon as chief executive

Monday 28th July 2008

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Qantas Airways, Australia's biggest airline, named the head of its Jetstar discount carrier to replace Geoff Dixon as chief executive in November.

Alan Joyce, 42, will also join Qantas's board immediately, the airline said in a statement. Dixon, 69, has run Qantas since 2001.

Earlier this month, Qantas announced it would cut 4% of its workforce and cancel plans to hire 1,200 more workers in response to soaring prices for jet fuel. The airline also planned to ground up to 22 aircraft.

The airline will cut about 20 percent of management and head office jobs, freeze pay for executives and may increase airfares, Dixon said July 18.

Qantas stock rose 0.6% to A$3.51 on the ASX.

The price of Singapore jet fuel has almost doubled in the past 12 months and reached a record US$181.85 a barrel on July 3. Airlines worldwide have cut jobs and raised airfares to try to claw back fuel costs. Industry-wide job cuts in the US amount to about 20,000.

By Jonathan Underhill

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