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SA airports concerned over long term sustainability

Published Oct 29, 2020

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CAPE TOWN -

Airports Company South Africa (ACSA) has raised concerns about the impact of long term sustainability following a decline in departing passengers and aircraft landings due to national lockdown.

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Chief executive officer, Mpumi Mpofu, said the impact of Covid-19 and travel restrictions resulted in the company foregoing performance bonuses and reducing other operating expenses.

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“Up until the end of the third quarter, we were able to withstand economic headwinds. Unfortunately, the pandemic and subsequent travel bans led to a drastic contraction in departing passengers and aircraft landings, resulting in an overall decline for the year,” said Mpofu.

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“We anticipate that the impact on traffic volumes and airline sustainability will be long term.

“Significant responses that have been introduced to mitigate the impact of the anticipated traffic volume decline include considerable reductions in operational and capital expenditure,” she said.

Mpofu added that the dramatic downturn could lead to an R11 billion funding requirement over a five to six year period, of which R3.5 billion would be needed in the next three years.

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With the uncertainty of a tighter lockdown due to a possible second wave, the company is uncertain on how resilient the future of domestic and international carriers will be.

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