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Kuwait’s Jazeera Airways’ profits slump 36.1%

9K-CAA_Airbus_A320_Jazeera_Airways_(7691715654) Aeroplan plane Creative Commons/
Jazeera Airways has a fleet of 22 aircraft and recently expanded its routes to destinations including Russia, Uzbekistan, Egypt and Iran
  • Chairman: it’s been a ‘tough’ 9 months
  • Load factor increases to 79%
  • Most active airline at KWI

Kuwaiti low-cost carrier Jazeera Airways has reported a 36.1 percent drop in profits for the first nine months of the year with a warning that over-capacity issues could further impact margins.

The airline, which sits second in the country behind Kuwait Airways, saw revenues increase 12.8 percent year-on-year over the period and passenger numbers were up 35.6 percent to 3.5 million.

Average load factor also increased by 2.6 percentage points to 79 percent.

However, this was not reflected in the bottom line, with operating profit down 30.4 percent to KD18.08 million ($58.6 million), largely attributed to a 17.3 percent decline in yields, and net profit slumping to KD13.27 million.

Marwan Boodai, chairman of Jazeera Airways, said the past nine months had presented a “tough regulatory, geopolitical and regional landscape”.

Jazeera Airways took delivery of two Airbus A320ceo aircraft during the third quarter of this year, which increased the size of its fleet to 22.

Its network also expanded with new destinations including Russia, Uzbekistan, Egypt, Iran, Montenegro, Serbia, Albania and Pakistan.

“While depressed yields due to over-capacity remain a challenge, we are well placed to leverage our low cost-base to maintain margins and create value for our shareholders,” added Boodai.

Jazeera had the most active aircraft movements at Kuwait International Airport (KIA) in Q3, at 13,260.

Passenger traffic through KIA is forecast to grow by 7 percent this year, fuelled by increased activity across the summer months, according to the Gulf state’s Directorate General of Aviation.