PAL trims last year’s losses to P4.33 B
Richmond Mercurio (The Philippine Star) - April 15, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Flag carrier Philippine Airlines (PAL) trimmed its losses last year, putting the company in a better position of achieving its target to return to profitability this year.

PAL’s parent firm PAL Holdings Inc. reported that it incurred a net loss of P4.33 billion in 2018 from P7.33 billion the previous year.

The airline was able to significantly slash its losses through higher revenues of P150.44 billion from P129.51 billion in 2017.

The firm’s expenses, however, soared to P155.68 billion from the previous year’s P132.15 billion, bulk of which came from flying operations.

During the year, PAL carried an average of 43,677 passengers per day, 22,418 domestic including codeshare with PAL Express and 21,259 international.

As of end 2018, PAL’s international route network covered 39 cities in 18 countries, while its domestic network covered 39 cities and towns.

The airline said it holds a market share of 27 percent for the Asia and Australia route for the January to November 2018 period, 24 percent for the Middle East route, 33 percent for the transpacific route, and 31 percent for the United Kingdom route.

PAL president and chief operating officer Jaime Bautista told The STAR last month the company’s target is to return to profitability this year.

The last time PAL was profitable was in 2016, despite net earnings falling by 39 percent year-on-year then.

By 2017, PAL incurred a net loss of P7.3 billion from a P4.13 billion profit the previous year on higher expenses.

For this year, PAL is counting on sustained strong passenger demand and hopefully continued stabilizing fuel prices for its bullish profit outlook.

PAL, the country’s only four-star global airline, is currently undertaking upgrades and expansion to achieve its goal of being a five-star carrier.

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