Virgin Australia to cut domestic capacity by 2%, axe Melbourne-Hong Kong

SYDNEY, Nov 6 (Reuters) - Virgin Australia Holdings Ltd plans to cut domestic capacity by at least 2% in the second half of the 2020 financial year, axe its Melbourne-Hong Kong route and remove five aircraft from its fleet, its chief executive said on Wednesday.

“Flying to the right destinations, with the right customer demand, and the right sized fleet will improve our financial performance,” Virgin Chief Executive Paul Scurrah said at the airline’s annual meeting in Brisbane.

Virgin competes against deeper-pocketed rival Qantas Airways Ltd in Australia’s domestic aviation market, which has experienced softer demand as the country’s economic growth falters.

Qantas last month said it would increase domestic capacity to maintain market share against Virgin, pointing to forward scheduling data that showed Virgin planned to raise capacity by 2% in the second half ending June 30, 2020. (Reporting by Jamie Freed; Editing by Himani Sarkar)