Air Arabia swings to quarterly loss on passenger slump

The United Arab Emirates' only listed airline carried 80,000 passengers in the April to June period

  
Image used for illustrative purpose. Air Arabia took delivery of 4 new aircraft and ended the year with a fleet of 50 Airbus A320 aircraft operating to 145 routes across the Middle East, Africa, Asia and Europe

Image used for illustrative purpose. Air Arabia took delivery of 4 new aircraft and ended the year with a fleet of 50 Airbus A320 aircraft operating to 145 routes across the Middle East, Africa, Asia and Europe

AIR ARABIA / Handout via Thomson Reuters Zawya

DUBAI- Middle East budget airline Air Arabia swung to a second-quarter loss of 239 million dirhams ($46 million) after passenger traffic collapsed because of the COVID-19 pandemic, it said on Monday.

The United Arab Emirates' only listed airline carried 80,000 passengers in the April to June period, according to Reuters calculations based on a company statement on Monday. That compared with 2.59 million passengers in the same quarter last year, when it made a profit of 210 million dirhams.

Air Arabia, which operates from hubs in the UAE, Egypt and Morocco, said it made 120 million dirhams in revenue. That compared with 1.14 billion dirhams in the same quarter last year.

“The full impact of COVID-19 on airline operations was fully materialised in the second quarter as a result of border closures and flights suspension across all key markets," said Chairman Sheikh Abdullah ibn Mohamed al-Thani.

Aviation has been one of the industries worst hit during the COVID-19 crisis, forcing airlines to lay off staff and seek government bailouts. ($1 = 3.6726 UAE dirham)

(Reporting by Alexander Cornwell Editing by David Goodman) ((Alexander.Cornwell@thomsonreuters.com;))

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