Airports Company South Africa (Acsa) said yesterday it was “well on its way to a full recovery” – with some of its airports even exceeding projections – following a bustling festive season that saw passenger volumes climb strongly towards the end of last year.
Acsa CEO Mpumi Mpofu said in a statement the organisation was showing signs of overall “robust recovery to pre-pandemic levels”, placing Acsa on a firm footing for growth and an expected return to profitability.
“Passenger volumes and aircraft movements reflecting a solid increase that has, in some cases, even exceeded our projections,” she said.
“Several highlights that show that the strategic, financial and operational responses we put into place at the start of the pandemic continue to provide a sound and reliable framework within which to sustain our business and to begin looking towards a post-Covid-19 future,” she said.
Total air passenger traffic through its network increased significantly over the previous period, as well as recording a solid recovery to near pre-Covid-19 passenger throughput.
Using the 2019/20 financial year as a base for recovery, passenger numbers across the Acsa network of airports achieved recovery of 87%, as at end of December 2023, with 17% year-on-year growth.
In December 2023, the organisation recorded 3.55 million passengers travelling through its airports, which exceeded its forecast of 3.43 million passengers. Of these, regional passenger volumes totalled 73 492, while domestic passenger volumes accounted for 2.4 million.
International passenger volumes rose to 1.018 million, breaching the one million mark for the first time since the pandemic.
Total airline movements showed a 93% recovery and 10% year-on-year growth for December 2023 and January 2024. Total international passenger traffic was 30% of the total market. The total number of passengers was 1 092 248 with total international air traffic movements being 9 610.
“While we are not completely out of the woods yet, our recent performance gives us much reason to remain optimistic. While the outlook for the global aviation industry remains fraught with challenges and uncertainty…” she said.