Korean Air posts 2020 profit on cargo transportation irrespective of minimal travel demand from customers

SEOUL, Feb 4 (Reuters) – Korean Air Lines posted on Thursday a consolidated running financial gain of 109 billion gained ($97.55 million) in 2020, as cargo product sales served offset a slump in passenger travel on the again of coronavirus restrictions.

Whilst South Korea’s greatest airline managed to keep away from an yearly loss in 2020, running gains had been down 58% from 257 billion received in 2019, the business stated in a regulatory submitting.

Cargo profits jumped 66% to 4.3 trillion gained in 2020 from a year earlier, though passenger gross sales slumped 74%. Cargo revenue have been underpinned by the airline’s strategy to improve the operation level of cargo planes and utilise idle passenger planes for transport, the airline claimed in a assertion.

“Demand for COVID-19 diagnostic kits and auto elements has increased, and some sea cargo need has transferred to air transportation, driving the improve in air cargo revenue,” it mentioned.

Korean Air is a person of the world’s largest air cargo carriers and has benefited from strong desire at a time when the collapse of passenger site visitors has lessened accessible transport room.

The fourth quarter, coinciding with digital product launches and Christmas, is the peak year for air freight and fees were up strongly due to the capability crunch and the start off of vaccine transport.

Air cargo demand from customers and freight charges remained unusually sturdy in January due to the fact of tight capability, in accordance to facts provider CLIVE Facts Expert services.

Korean Air’s acquisition of Asiana Airways Inc, declared past yr, is on observe and awaiting acceptance from antitrust authorities, a spokeswoman stated on Thursday.

Shares in Korean Air shut up 1.3%, compared to a 1.4% slide in the wider industry.

South Korea’s President Moon Jae-in termed on Wednesday for seamless preparations for coronavirus vaccinations, as regulators accredited imports of Pfizer’s COVID-19 shot and the region geared up to start inoculations later this thirty day period.

Korean Air is aiding with vaccine transport. ($1 = 1,117.4300 won) (Reporting by Joyce Lee Supplemental Reporting by Jamie Freed in Sydney Modifying by Ana Nicolaci da Costa)

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