Home' Asian Aviation : AAV June 2010 Contents Despite a first-half loss of S$466 million
(US$331.6 million), Singapore Airlines (SIA)
turned a profit of S$215.8 million for the
full year ended 31 March, maintaining its
unbroken record of annual profitability.
Revenue hit S$12.07 billion, a drop of
20.56 percent, while expenditure was
S$12.64 billion, down 16.23 percent. The
airline carried 16.48 million passengers,
fewer than the year-earlier total of 18.29
million, although average load factor rose
1.9 percentage points to 78.4 percent, as the
airline reduced capacity.
In the last quarter of the financial year,
SIA took delivery of three Airbus A330-300s
and decommissioned one Boeing 747-400
and one 777-200. A new, five-times weekly
service to Munich using 777-300ER aircraft
was launched on 28 March and the carrier's
ten weekly 777-300ER services to Zurich were
upgraded to a daily Airbus A380-800 service.
The all-business class A340-500 service to
Newark returned to normal daily operations
in January. On the other hand, services
to Karachi, Pakistan, and Nanjing, China,
were withdrawn in February and March
respectively, while frequencies to Vietnam's
Ho Chi Minh City and Guangzhou, China,
were reduced due to tough competition from
A new service to Tokyo's Haneda Airport
will be launched in October and frequencies
to Hong Kong, Delhi and Seoul will be
On 29 April, SIA signed an agreement to
lease six 777-200s to Royal Brunei Airlines for
a period of between two to two-and-a-half
years. An agreement to sell four 777-200s to
Transaero Airlines was concluded on 3 May.
SIA predicts fuel costs will continue to be a
concern for the group this year, adding that
it is difficult to predict how the price of fuel
will fluctuate over the next 12 months. The
group's jet-fuel requirement is projected to
be 33 million barrels. The company plans to
hedge at least a fifth of that amount.
Advance travel bookings for the year ahead
are encouraging, especially in business class,
the carrier says. Similarly, forward indicators
suggest that the recent recovery in air cargo
volume will be sustained in the near term.
Passenger and cargo yields should keep pace
with the growth in demand.
"The sustainability of this improvement
depends on developments in the world
economy and on business, and consumer
confidence," SIA says.
From May through to March 2011, SIA
will take delivery of four A380-800s and
eight A330-300s, while one 747-400 will be
returned to the lessor and ten 777-200s will
be retired from the fleet.
SIA currently operates a fleet of 10 A380-
800s, seven 747-400s, 75 777s, five A340-
500s and 11 A330-300s. -- William Dennis
SIA overcomes first-half
loss to post full-year profit
An Air India Express (AIE) Boeing 737-800
overshot the hilltop runway at Mangalore
International Airport (MAI) on 22 May after
attempting to land in fine weather, killing 152
of the 160 passengers and six crew members
Flight IX812 from Dubai to Mangalore was
unable to stop in time at the end of Runway 24
and plunged 90 metres off a cliff into a forest,
breaking in two at the wing and bursting into
According to M Chandrashekar, an official
of the Ministry of Civil Aviation in Delhi, initial
investigations show that the pilot intended
to abort the landing, but failed to pull up
after the aircraft touched down far along the
2.4km runway. Visibility was said to be good,
at 3000m on final approach. There was no
indication that flight IX812 was in distress prior
The eight survivors were those who sat in the
wing area where the fuselage snapped.
The aircraft's flight recorders have yet to be
recovered. The 737 was delivered to Air India in
Mumbai-based AIE is a low-cost carrier (LCC)
wholly-owned by Air India. It was set up in
2006 due to fierce competition from the slew
of new LCCs that had surfaced in the Indian
AIE operates a fleet of 24 737-800s, all
configured to seat 180 in a single-class layout.
It has a network of 14 international and 17
domestic destinations. This is the seventh crash
involving Air India or its subsidiary since 1978.
MAI is located on a hilltop, with the runway
landing approaches on either end leading up
to steep drops. The east end of the runway is
500m from the drop, while the west end is just
83m away. An Indian airport official said the
unevenness of the runway makes landing very
challenging. -- William Dennis
Air India Express Boeing 737 overshoots runway: 158 killed
Singapore Airlines operates 75 Boeing 777s in its fleet.
| JUNE 2010
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