Malaysia Airlines ends 2018 with 'marginally lower' losses

- A Monitor Desk Report 02 Mar, 2019 | 1060 Views|-+
Dhaka: Malaysia Airlines has revealed that it closed 2018 "on a marginally lower loss compared to a year ago".

Last year was "challenging" as a result of several factors, the privately held airline said that in its latest quarterly update, without providing any specific financial figure.

The factors include crew shortages in 2018's second half, intense competition "with supply outstripping demand" and volatility in fuel and foreign exchange rates.

However, the Oneworld carrier says it also saw "encouraging improvements", with unit revenue inching up 2 per cent year-on-year thanks to "improved pricing segmentation". Revenue climbed 1 per cent. Load factor was flat at 78 per cent.

On-time performance improved 2 per cent year-on-year, with the highest monthly figure coming in at 83 per cent. The airline attributes this to improved operational efficiencies in engineering and ground handling.

Over the course of 2018, Malaysia Airlines inducted six new Airbus A350s and six A330-200s formerly operated by Air Berlin.

The A350s are operated on its route to London from its Kuala Lumpur base, while the A330s are used on "higher-density regional routes across Asia-Pacific".

In the last quarter, the carrier officially launched its A380 project, Amal, dedicated to Hajj and Umrah services. Its six A380s operate up to three daily flights to Jeddah and Madinah from Kuala Lumpur.

"Moving forward, with the competitive operating environment expected to persist, we have started a concerted effort to narrow the losses in 2019 through a series of revenue improvements and cost-rationalisation initiatives, as we roll out the next phase of the turnaround plan," Izham Ismail, Group Chief, Malaysia Airlines stated.

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