BA slumps to worst losses since privatisation

LONDON - British Airways (BA) has revealed its biggest ever full-year losses since privatisation in 1987.

British Airways
British Airways

The carrier has announced a loss before tax of £401m for financial year to 31 March, down from a pre-tax profit of £922m in 2008. The company also registered a £220m operating loss.

BA's total number of passengers fell 4.3% year-on-year to 33.1m, although the airline has achieved a minor increase in revenues from £8.76bn to £8.99bn.

‘Reduced passenger and cargo demand and high fuel prices last summer contributed to our £220m operating loss as our total fuel bill reached almost £3bn,' said chief executive Willie Walsh.

Walsh added: ‘The prolonged nature of the global downturn makes this the harshest trading environment we have ever faced and, with no immediate improvement visible. It is vital, therefore, that we remain absolutely committed to our plans to establish British Airways as a high-performing, market-focused, global premium airline.'

BA has created a cross-business operational task force to make its positioning more responsive to market changes.