Lufthansa sees revenues drop 80pc, no full recovery until 2024

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — German airline group Lufthansa yesterday reported a net loss of EUR1.49 billion (USD1.77 billion) for the second quarter, when the pandemic essentially shut down passenger traffic, and issued a sobering forecast for demand to not reach pre-virus levels before 2024.

“Especially for long-haul routes there will be no quick recovery,” CEO Carsten Spohr said in a statement accompanying the quarterly earnings statement.

Lufthansa said it carried 96 per cent fewer passengers during the April-June quarter and experienced an 80 per cent drop in revenue, to EUR1.9 billion from EUR9.6 billion in the same quarter a year earlier.

Most of that revenue came from the company’s cargo and maintenance businesses, not from flying passengers.

The company is the recipient of a EUR9 billion government bailout to enable it to keep flying and said it will emerge from the pandemic as a smaller airline with 22,000 fewer jobs due to a cost-cutting programme.

The company slashed operating expenses during the quarter with the help of government wage support programmes for employees put on shorter hours or no hours. It also cancelled non-essential expenditures.

The cargo division made a profit of EUR299 million, up from EUR9 million a year ago.

A parked Lufthansa aircraft is seen through a hangar window at the airport in Frankfurt, Germany on July 30. PHOTO: AP