Emirates SkyCargo battles trade tension and unrest

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Emirates Group profits grew by 8% for the half year 2019-20 period but the cargo division faced falling volumes and yields.

Profits for the group were $320 million though revenue was down 2% to $14.5 billion, caused by the 45-day Southern Runway close at Dubai International Airport and unfavourable currency movements in Europe, Australia, South Africa, India and Pakistan.

Improving profits were put down to fuel prices falling 9%, but the gains were partially offset by the negative currency movements.

For Emirates Airline, revenue was down 3% to $12.9 billion but profits were up 282% to $235 million.

Cargo uplift was down 8% at 1.2 million tonnes and yields declined 3% reflecting the tough business environment due to trade tensions and unrest in some key markets.

At dnata, profits were down 64% to $85 million, with the collapse of Thomas Cook having a major impact.

Airport operations remain the largest contributor to dnata’s revenue, worth $983 million even though cargo tonnage was 1.5 million, down 6%.

In the period, dnata won a number of key contracts and took full ownership of UAE freight forwarder Dubai Express.

His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, chairman and chief executive of Emirates Airline and Group says: “The global outlook is difficult to predict, but we expect the airline and travel industry to continue facing headwinds over the next six months with stiff competition adding downward pressure on margins. As a Group we remain focussed on developing our business, and we will continue to invest in new capabilities that empower our people, and enable us to offer even better products, services, and experiences for our customers.”