Air Arabia reports net loss

Air Arabia, the first and largest low-cost carrier (LCC) in the Middle East and North Africa, announced its financial and operational results for the first half of this year ending June 30, 2020 as the global aviation industry continues to battle the impact of Covid-19.

Air Arabia registered a net loss of Dh169 million ($46 million) for the first half ending June 30, 2020, a direct result of second quarter performance being heavily impacted by Covid-19 and the subsequent cancellation of scheduled flight operations. The company’s turnover for the first six months of 2020 registered Dh1.021 billion, a drop of 53 per cent compared to Dh2.173 billion in the corresponding period last year. Air Arabia served a total 2.48 million passengers from all its four hubs in the first half of 2020, a drop of 57 per cent compared to first half of 2019.

The first half 2020 results were largely driven by the second quarter that witnessed the most severe impact of Covid-19 on airlines operation. Regular flight schedule was affected by airport closures and suspension of flights. Operations during the second quarter relied by large on repatriation, charter and cargo flights. This resulted in lower revenues for the second quarter reaching 120 million and consequently impacting the second quarter profitability to a net loss of Dh239 million.

Air Arabia took early measures to control overall cost and enhance cash position despite the challenges. These include deferred cost and capital expenditure, workforce restructuring as well as cost rationalisation and efficiency, which all resulted in reducing overall cost and preserving liquidity.

Air Arabia today operates a mix of scheduled, repatriation, charter, and cargo flights across its operating hubs in the UAE, Morocco, and Egypt. In July 2020, Air Arabia Abu Dhabi, the capital’s first low cost carrier, launched its operations from its base at Abu Dhabi International Airport.