SIA Cargo’s operating loss triples

Singapore Airlines Cargo’s operating loss widened from S$31 million to S$99 million, year-over-year, in the first half of fiscal-year 2012-2013. Freight load factor also lagged during this period, falling 1.5 percent, year-over-year, to 62.7 percent, amid a 4.7-percent, year-over-year, traffic decline.

Such figures have led Singapore Airlines officials to reevaluate their fleet, according to a press release. Although the carrier retained all 13 Boeing 747-400 freighters in its fleet during the first half of fiscal-year 2012-2013, which ended September 30, the coming months will see some fleet modifications. In the press release, the carrier detailed plans to remove one of its freighters from service between January and May 2014, due to sluggish airfreight demand and high fuel prices.

“The air cargo market remains badly depressed and the near-term outlook continues to be challenging,” SIA Cargo President Tan Kai Ping said in the statement. “Freight rates have declined to a level where certain flights are no longer viable.”

Company-wide, Singapore Airlines has also contended with challenges in recent months. The company’s net profit declined 30 percent, year-over-year, to S$168 million in the first half of fiscal-year 2012-2013, despite group operating profit rising 6 percent, year-over-year, to S$142 million.

Singapore Airline’s 43-percent, year-over-year, drop in operating profit in the second quarter of fiscal-year 2012-2013 negatively impacted half-year statistics, according to a separate press release. The carrier partially blamed the “soft” airfreight market on this plunge.

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