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Fri 16 Mar 2012 11:22 AM

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Royal Jordanian says fuel bill a 'big challenge'

Airline posts 28% increase in passengers in February but fuel bill also rises by 22%

Royal Jordanian says fuel bill a 'big challenge'
Hussein Dabbas, president and CEO of Royal Jordanian

Royal Jordanian transported 240,000 passengers in February, a 28 percent increase compared to 188,000 passengers in the same period in 2011.

The number of departures and flying hours increased by 9.3 percent and the seat factor increased by 7.5 percent, reaching 70 percent, it added.

However, the airline's fuel bill during February reached JD20.3m, compared to JD16.6m paid in the same period last year, a 22 percent increase.

The airline's president and CEO, Hussein Dabbas, said the price of fuel remained a "big challenge".

Dabbas said that Royal Jordanian has developed a specific strategy to increase revenues and reduce costs caused by the sharp increase in fuel prices during this year.

It said it has suspended operations to some destinations and cancelled many flights, in addition to stopping capital purchases and employment.

He attributed the rise in the number of passengers during February, which is considered one of the weakest months in terms of the travel, to the success of its marketing promotion plan.

He said that the company has been exerting much effort, both in Jordan and at its 61 destinations worldwide, to attract more passengers and support transit flights by constantly improving its ground and air services.

Dabbas expressed optimism about the company's capability to achieve more success in March and the months ahead despite the difficulties relating to the continuing regional instability.

Royal Jordanian also registered a record number of passengers during January, when 268 million passengers flew with the airline, compared to 213 million passengers in the same period in 2011.

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