Air New Zealand reports loss due to Covid

Air New Zealand plane

Wellington, (Asian independent) Air New Zealand on Thursday announced that it suffered an NZ$87 million loss for the 2020 financial year due to the travel restrictions imposed in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The flag carrier said that the ongoing border restrictions saw operating revenue decline 48 per cent to NZ$2.5 billion as international flights were significantly reduced, with capacity down 55 per cent on the prior year, Xinhua news agency reported.

Meanwhile, the cargo flying revenue grew by 71 per cent compared to the prior year thanks to airfreight support schemes.

The airline’s domestic business performed strongly, led by strong leisure demand as well as corporate customers flying at close to pre-Covid levels.

Chair Therese Walsh said the 2021 financial result reflected the reality of a year in which the airline was unable to fly two-thirds of its passenger network.

“In a severely constrained environment, Air New Zealand maintained cost discipline, focusing on delivering with excellence in the areas in its control.

“The return of a strong domestic business and growth in the cargo services that underpin our key export markets was a reminder of the airline’s crucial role in New Zealand’s infrastructure,” she said.

Chief Executive Officer Greg Foran said the 2021 financial year was one in which the airline played the hand it was dealt, kept planes flying every day and took some important steps in the delivery of its refreshed strategy.