By Andy Sambidge
Maher bin Salman bin Jabur Al-Massallam admits he still can't says when airline will return to profitability
The CEO of Bahrain's Gulf Air has hailed "remarkable growth" at the airline during the first half of 2014 but admitted he could not say when it would return to profitability.
In comments published by Bahrain News Agency, CEO Maher bin Salman bin Jabur Al-Massallam said the company has successfully accomplished its strategic restructuring which began in 2013.
Al-Massallam said the carrier's H1 results would reflect "huge growth in terms of strong operational performance".
In May, Gulf Air announced a 52 percent reduction in annual losses and a financial performance that surpassed the airline's restructuring target by BD14.5m ($38.4m).
The carrier said losses have fallen by BD100m ($265m) with year-on-year cost savings of 28 percent achieved.
Gulf Air added that its workforce had been cut by 27 percent as it announced what it called its strongest financial results for eight years.
Al-Massallam told Bahrain News Agency that it would be difficult to comment on when the company would enter profitability, adding: "We're committed to positive development aimed to curb losses to a large extent."
He said: "There are still many things which should be done in order to boost the company's economic sustainability and to assess its commercial services necessary to boost the kingdom's national economic development.
His comments come as Gulf Air announces a number of new destinations on its network such as Al Maktoum International Airport in Dubai, Thiruvananthapuram in India, Mashhad and Tehran in Iran, Sialkot in Pakistan, and Athens in Greece.
The company has also recently announced the launching of flights to Moscow in October.