QANTAS has suffered a one billion dollar loss in profits in the first half of its trading year, as the COVID crisis continues to have a major impact on the aviation industry.
The airline posted an underlying loss before tax of $1.03 billion and a $6.9 billion drop in revenue due to the ongoing closure of domestic and international borders and Victoria’s extended lockdown.
Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce said the results are “stark but they won’t come as a surprise.”
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“Border closures meant we lost virtually 100 per cent of our international flying and 70 per cent of our domestic flying,” Mr Joyce said.
“Three-quarters of our revenue – around $7 billion – went with it.”
Mr Joyce said despite the challenges, he believes the results show the group’s underlying strength.
“The fact that we were able to limit a $7 billion drop in revenue to a bottom-line loss of circa $1 billion says a lot about how the Qantas Group is managing the crisis.
“If you look around the world, airlines are confronting losses that are far bigger.
The airline also confirmed it was working to restart international travel by the end of October 2021 and increase travel with New Zealand in July.
“We’re now planning for international travel to restart at the end of October this year, in-line with the date for Australia’s vaccine rollout to be effectively complete,” Mr Joyce said.
“We’re still targeting July for a material increase in New Zealand flights.
“We’re in close consultation with government, and if things change, so will our dates. But with the vaccine rollout already underway, we’re on the right track.”