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Heathrow sees 97% reduction in passenger numbers

Coroanavirus: Airport operator seeks to reduce costs by 30%

Mark Moran
01 May 2020
Heathrow expects passenger demand to remain weak until governments around the world deem it safe to lift travel restrictions
Heathrow expects passenger demand to remain weak until governments around the world deem it safe to lift travel restrictions

 

Heathrow Airport passenger numbers fell by 97% in April during demand slumped amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The airport has also revealed that passenger numbers fell 18.8% to 14.6 million during the first three months of the year.

Heathrow expects passenger demand to remain weak until governments around the world deem it safe to lift travel restrictions.

Overall revenue fell 12.7% to £593m and EBITA fell by 22.4% to £315m

Heathrow’s management says it took immediate action to conserve cash and reduce costs by around 30%, through cutting management pay, renegotiating all contracts and consolidating operations. Capital expenditure has been cut by £650m.

The airport said its financial position is robust. Heathrow has £3.2 billion in liquidity, sufficient to maintain the business at least over the next 12 months, even with no passengers.

Heathrow CEO John Holland-Kaye said: “We are working with partners round the world to establish a Common International Standard for safe air travel to help the economy recover from the COVID-19 crisis. Re-establishing long haul passenger flights is critical for the UK’s supply chain, exports, inbound tourism and education.

“Heathrow is proud to serve Britain by remaining open for repatriating UK citizens and critical supplies of PPE.  When we have beaten this virus, we will need to get Britain flying again so that the economy can recover as fast as possible. That is why we are calling on the UK government to take a lead in setting a Common International Standard for safe air travel.”

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