Cathay Pacific posts record high profit for 2010

10:26, March 10, 2011      

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Hong Kong flag carrier Cathay Pacific on Wednesday posted its 2010 net profit, which surged to 14.048 billion Hong Kong dollars (1.803 billion U.S. dollars), a record for the group.

According to Cathay Pacific's 2010 annual report, its net profit nearly tripled from last year's 4.694 billion HK dollars. Turnover for the year rose by 33.7 percent to 89.524 billion HK dollars and earnings per share rose by 199.3 percent.

The group's business began to recover from the global economic downturn in the second half of 2009, with its robust recovery in demand for passenger and cargo services as well as the sale of assets.

The group benefited from the strong profits earned by its associated company, Air China (which contributed 2.482 billion HK dollars to the 2010 result), from the aggregate profit of 2.165 billion HK dollars from the disposal of the group's interests in Hong Kong Air Cargo Terminals Limited and Hong Kong Aircraft Engineering Company Limited.

Cathay Pacific and its subsidiary company Dragonair carried a total of 26.8 million passengers in 2010, up 9.1 percent year on year. Passenger revenue for the year increased by 29.3 percent to 59.354 billion HK dollars.

The group's cargo revenue increased by 50.1 percent to 25.901 billion HK dollars. Freight carried by Cathay Pacific and Dragonair increased by 18.1 percent to 1.8 million tonnes. Cargo capacity increased by 15.2 percent, as the group brought back into service freighters which had been parked in the desert during the downturn.

Demand in all key markets was strong, and especially so in the peak season of October and November in 2010.

On the cost side, fuel representing 35.6 percent of the group's total operating costs, remains to be the largest single cost. The fuel price increased during the year and was 28.0 percent higher on average than in 2009.

The group pledged to increase the size of the airline and to further strengthen Hong Kong's position as a leading international aviation hub.

In March 2011, Cathay Pacific announced the acquisition of 15 new Airbus A330-300 aircraft and 10 new Boeing 777-300ER aircraft. Cathay Pacific is also in discussions which could result in the acquisition of 14 more aircraft.

Cathay Pacific Chairman Christopher Pratt said, "Demand is at present expected to remain strong in 2011, but this expectation could be undermined if the current (or any higher) level of oil prices were to reduce global economic activity."

Pratt said the group will increase its capacity with the introduction of new destinations and increased frequencies.

Source: Xinhua
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