Thai Airways International losses widen, carrier forecasts challenging 2020. Bangkok Airways profit up after investment sales
Thai Airways International (THAI) said it expected the year ahead to be challenging after posting a widening net loss in calendar 2019. Read More »
The airline reported a THB12 billion (US$375 million) net loss for the 12 months to December 31 2019, compared with a THB11.6 billion loss in the prior corresponding period. Revenue fell 7.7% to THB184 billion, THAI said in its full year results published on March 2.
THAI carried 24.51 million passengers in 2019, up 0.8% or 24.32 million passengers, for the same period in 2018. Passenger yield, an industry term measuring average airfares per passenger, slipped 6.8%. The airline ended calendar 2019 with 103 aircraft, unchanged from the previous year.
Looking ahead THAI president, Sumeth Damrongchaitham, said the airline had cut flights in response to the COVID-19 virus and the restrictions on the movement of people by governments around the world had imposed. It said there was "still no sign of relief".
Other factors to impact on operations included the trade conflict between China and the U.S., the political uncertainty surrounding the UK’s withdrawal from the European Union and geopolitical concerns.
"The aviation industry in 2020 will still face challenges," Sumeth said. But there was some good news. THAI had reduced total expenses to THB196,470 million by THB12,088 million in 2018.
"THAI will improve its organizational structure to become more efficient and suitable for business operations and appoint qualified staff to ensure all operations are closely supervised," a company statement said.
In contrast to THAI’s struggles, Bangkok Airways said net profit rose 35.3%, to THB356.7 million (US$908 million), in calendar 2019 alongside revenue growth of 2.4%, to THB28.6 billion. The airline carried 5.86 million passengers in 2019, down 1.6% compared with 2018.
Bangkok Airways president, Puttipong Prasarttong-Osoth, said the increase in revenue was largely due to special items from gains on sales of investments.
"Operating revenue of the airline business itself declined by 6.9% due to intense competition that forced average fare prices to drop by 5.8%," he said in a statement at the end of last month.