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AirAsia Philippines sees recovery by 2023
“For 2021 and beyond, year-on-year passenger traffic is projected to grow steadily up to 2023,” AirAsia Philippines chief executive officer Ricky Isla said.
STAR/File

AirAsia Philippines sees recovery by 2023

Richmond Mercurio (The Philippine Star) - May 25, 2021 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Low-cost carrier AirAsia Philippines is expecting to fully recover from the pandemic-induced slowdown by 2023.

“For 2021 and beyond, year-on-year passenger traffic is projected to grow steadily up to 2023,” AirAsia Philippines chief executive officer Ricky Isla said.

“We hope that 2023, that’s our year of recovery. It’s quite long. We will be patient. We will be agile. We will be very resilient,” Isla said.

He said AirAsia’s road to recovery could start this year at the earliest, adding that the company intends to resume with its international flights by August.

“We don’t have international flights at the moment, but we will be ready,” the official said.

AirAsia Philippines, together with other local carriers, have been badly hit by the pandemic since last year.

Together, combined losses of AirAsia Philippines, Cebu Pacific, and Philippine Airlines were estimated to have reached P65 billion last year.

For its part, revenues of AirAsia Philippines last year plunged by 77 percent to P6.33 billion from P27.36 billion in 2019 as a result of travel restrictions.

Passengers carried by airline in 2020 stood at 2.01 million, 77 percent lower than the 8.55 million passengers flown in 2019.

In the first quarter, passengers carried saw a 91-percent drop from the 1.79 million passengers carried in the same period in 2020.

AirAsia Philippines ended the first quarter with a fleet of 24 aircraft.

In the meantime, the carrier has been gearing up for the eventual return of air travel demand as it ramps up its digital payment options and looks to vaccinate at least 1,500 frontliners.

The airline last April was also given the green light by the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines to take part in the transport of COVID-19 vaccines.

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