Philip Chen Nan-lok will become the first Chinese chief executive of Cathay Pacific Airways at the end of the year, in the latest management reshuffle at Hong Kong's No1 carrier and its parent John Swire & Sons (Hong Kong). Mr Chen, 49, will step into David Turnbull's shoes when Mr Turnbull succeeds James Hughes-Hallett as chairman of Cathay Pacific. Mr Turnbull, 49, will also succeed Mr Hughes-Hallett as chairman of John Swire & Sons (Hong Kong) and Swire Pacific, the companies announced yesterday. Mr Chen, who joined the Swire group straight from the University of Hong Kong in 1977 with an honours degree in political science and history, has been Cathay Pacific's chief operating officer since July 1998. He is also a director of John Swire & Sons (Hong Kong) and John Swire & Sons (China). Mr Chen was chief executive of Hong Kong Dragon Airlines from 1994 to 1997, its first years of operation. Tony Tyler, Cathay's director of corporate development, will take over as chief operating officer. Media-friendly Mr Hughes-Hallett will return to London to take over from Sir Adrian Swire as chairman of John Swire & Sons. He has been chairman of Swire Pacific and Cathay Pacific since 1999. Swire Properties managing director Keith Kerr will replace Mr Hughes-Hallett as chairman of Swire Properties. Mr Kerr, 51, will remain an executive director of Swire Pacific and managing director of Swire Properties. ING Financial Markets analyst Cusson Leung told Dow Jones yesterday he did not expect the companies' key strategies to change under the new management. 'It is unlikely that the new management would bring the companies towards a dramatically new direction,' he said.