May 17, 2022

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Emirates airline, stung by soaring fuel prices, posts $1.1 billion dollar loss

2 min read

Aircraft operated by Emirates, at Dubai International Airport in the United Arab Emirates.

Christopher Pike | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Dubai’s Emirates Airline posted a loss of $1.1 billion in the year through March, up from a $5.5 billion loss the previous year, despite soaring jet fuel costs which threaten to overshadow a nascent recovery in the global aviation sector.

The world’s largest long haul carrier said Friday that revenue jumped 91% to $16.1 billion dollars, helping to narrow its losses, as travel lockdowns eased from the worst of the coronavirus pandemic and the airline added capacity.

“2021-22 was largely about recovery, after the toughest year in our Group’s history,” Emirates Group Chairman and Chief Executive Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum said in a statement on Friday.  

“We expect the Group to return to profitability in 2022-23, and are working hard to hit our targets, while keeping a close watch on headwinds such as high fuel prices, inflation, new COVID-19 variants, and political and economic uncertainty.”

The airline had resumed flights to 140 destinations by the end of March, but the surge in fuel prices — up more than 50% so far this year — continues to challenge the pandemic-battered aviation sector. Emirates said its fuel bill more than doubled to $3.8 billion dollars as the price of oil and jet fuel soared in recent quarters.

“It’s very difficult to establish where that price will stop, or how far it might go down,” Sheikh Ahmed told CNBC in an interview on Tuesday when asked about the price of fuel. “That’s really affecting the airline business in a big way,” he added, saying geopolitics and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine was having a significant impact on fuel prices. 

Emirates said fuel accounted for 23% of operating costs over the year, compared to just 14% in 2020-21.

“The relatively recent reopening of important markets in Asia is key to Emirates’ recovery,” Alex Macheras, an independent aviation analyst, told CNBC. “Challenges…

2022-05-14 05:38:29

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