Cathay ekes profit amid cargo pressure

Airline posts first-half net income of just HK$24 million in a turnaround from last year's losses that led to capacity cuts

Cathay Pacific Airways

Cathay Pacific Airways announced earnings well below expectations yesterday as yield pressure on regional routes and a weak cargo market derailed recovery efforts.

The air cargo carrier posted net profit of HK$24 million in the first half of the year, far below the HK$600 million expected by analysts.

Cathay’s ambitions to achieve a significant turnaround was also stymied by the losses generated from its air cargo joint venture, Air China Cargo, and establishment losses at its HK$5.9 billion cargo terminal at the airport that opened in February.

Still, thanks to lower jet fuel prices and stronger passenger demand, the company recovered from its HK$929 million loss in the same period last year. Turnover declined 0.6 per cent to HK$48.6 billion.