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Sudan Tribune

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Ethiopian Airlines says profits may hit record high

May 17, 2008 (ADDIS ABABA) — Ethiopian Airlines net profits for the first nine months of 2007/08 reached 484 million birr ($55.67 million), the airline said in a statement late on Friday.

The state-owned carrier posted net profits of 129 million birr in 2006/07. The statement predicted that, based on the first nine months of 2007/08, the airline would achieve a record net profits and revenues.

Expenses for the same period rose by 21 percent, the brunt of which Chief Executive Girma Wake said was spent on fuel.

“Fuel price remains of concern to the industry as a whole and Ethiopian believes that costs will continue to escalate into the next quarter given the present trend in price of fuel,” Wake said.

Revenues for the period rose 29 percent to 6.6 million birr, he said. The airline transported 1.9 million passengers, a 19 percent increase on last year.

Wake said the improvements in revenue and traffic were due to increased frequency of flights, the introduction of new routes and an increase in cargo revenue.

(Reuters)