Joined: 17 Oct 2003
|Posted: Mon Oct 20, 2003 12:18 pm Post subject: Vietnam Air Surges On SARS Recovery
|Vietnam Airlines announced third quarter revenue surging 67.5 percent from the second quarter to USD$196 million as travel bounced back after the containment of the SARS virus in Asia.
A spokesman for the unlisted, state-owned carrier said the company's revenues during the nine-month period reached 8.4 trillion dong (USD$540.6 million), or 73.1 percent of its annual target for this year of 11.5 trillion dong (USD$740 million).
The airline, which dominates the market in Vietnam, saw its second quarter revenues sink 94 percent to USD$117 million from USD$227 million in the first quarter of this year after Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome spurred cancellations in March.
The southeast Asian country was declared free from SARS in late April but the outbreak still deterred tourists, with the number of foreign visitors in the first half of the year falling 17 percent on a year earlier.
September foreign visitor arrivals surged nearly 40 percent to 210,091 from July. Arrivals in the remaining three months of 2003 are expected to reach 400,000, according to government figures.
Vietnam Airlines ferried 2.83 million passengers during the first nine months of this year, up 1.7 percent on a year earlier, company figures showed. Quarterly comparative passenger figures were not available.
The airline said passenger loads, or the proportion of occupied seats in an airplane, rose to 71.58 percent at the end of last month, from 63 percent in the first half of 2003.
Vietnam Airlines said it has leased two Boeing 777 jets, expanding its fleet to 34 aircraft, including four Boeing 777s, seven Boeing 767s, three Airbus A321s, 10 Airbus A320s, eight ATR72s and two Fokker 70s.
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