Airports company posts positive revenue

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Johannesburg - Despite the harsh economic climate, Airports Company South Africa has posted improved revenue from last year's R2.8 billion to R3.2 billion.

In a statement on Thursday, ACSA said its financial results were solid, despite an environment characterised by declining air traffic activity due to the financial slowdown.

"International traffic, which yielded higher returns, declined by 0.74 percent compared to 2008's 9.9 percent increase," said Acsa.

For the first time in Acsa's history, passenger numbers saw an overall reduction of 7.7 percent, in comparison to the increase it saw in 2008 of 10.6 percent.

Aircraft landings at the airport also decreased by 3.8 percent, despite the 7.5 percent increase it reported last year.

Acsa Executive Director for Finance Priscillah Mabelane said the company's situation was made more difficult as it had undertaken the highest-ever capital expenditure programme

"We also had to contend with adverse determinations by the Regulator, which required the Group to pay upfront for the capital expenditure programme and recover the investment later through tariffs simultaneously.

"This was at a time when banks and other finance institutions were tightening their lending criteria," she said.

According to the company, it was able to increase its income by 13 percent due to the growth in property, car hire and hotel operations. This non-aeronautical revenue went up from R 1.4 billion last year to R 1.7 billion.

The domestic passenger service charge for the year increased by R4 to R36 per departing passenger from 2008's R32 while the average yield for domestic aircraft landings went from R1398 last year to R1 558.

Managing Director Monhla Hlahla, said Acsa's response to the challenge was to focus on non-aeronautical income, diversify sources of funding, review the capital infrastructure programme of R17 billion and improve customer care initiatives.

"Simply put, the future infrastructure development and sustainability of ACSA are at risk. It is crucial for us that the current regulatory model recognises ACSA's position. The model requires policy input so that it can be more transparent, predictable and balance risk and reward," she said