By Suleiman al-Khalidi
Airline bounces back after recording loss in 2008, helped by lower fuel costs.
Royal Jordanian (RJ) airline, helped by lower fuel costs, bounced back to net profit of 25.5 million dinars ($35.9 million) in the first nine months of 2009 compared with a loss of 3.8 million in the same period last year.
A fall in fuel costs of 50 percent and a reduction in operational costs by 20 percent outpaced a 16 percent decline in revenues to 449 million dinars from 532 million.
RJ President and CEO Hussein Dabbas said the drop in revenues was due to a 3 percent drop in passenger numbers and a 32 percent decline in cargo.
Chairman Nasser Lozi said the airline forecast "positive" 2009 results despite challenges to the global airline business anmd tougher regional competition that pressured ticket prices.
Jordan sold 71 percent of RJ to international and local investors in an initial public offering (IPO) at the end of 2007 that made RJ the first Arab state carrier to be privatised.
Foreign investors, including the Beirut-based investment firm controlled by the Mikati family which acquired a 19.5 percent shareholding, now own at least 40 percent of the carrier's total 84.3 million dinars capital.
The government retained a 29 percent stake. (Reuters)For all the latest transport news from the UAE and Gulf countries, follow us on Twitter and Linkedin, like us on Facebook and subscribe to our YouTube page, which is updated daily.