Malaysia Airlines expecting improved operating profit in 2010; Chinese airlines affected by Yuan

Malaysia Airlines CEO, Tengku Azmil Aziz, stated the carrier expects to post an operating profit in the range of USD30 million to USD90 million for FY2010, marking a turnaround from operating losses in 2009. The carrier is also considering debt financing in 2010 to fund aircraft orders, but added that it has no plans for additional equity raising after a successful rights issue. Shares in the carrier gained 5.5% yesterday.

Chinese airlines affected by Yuan revaluation uncertainty

On the other end of the spectrum, Chinese airline shares continued to suffer after recent strong gains and concerns about exchange rates, with shares in the ‘Big 3’ Chinese airlines – China Eastern, Air China and China Southern – slipping 4.0%, 3.5% and 3.1%, respectively (following reductions of 3.4%, 3.5% and 6.0% on Tuesday). Shares in Hainan Airlines were 0.9% weaker yesterday.

Elsewhere, Australia’s Skywest Airlines surged 6.1% and Korean Air gained 3.1%.

For this and more coverage of the region’s aviation updates, subscribe to Asia Pacific Airline Daily. Other highlights in today’s edition include:

  • China prepares for increased traffic in Shanghai due to World Expo Shanghai;
  • Boeing Capital Corp states there are “tremendous opportunities” for aircraft financing in Thailand;
  • Tiger Airways Australia’s new Managing Director to expand business;
  • Indian aviation sector unlikely to have extension of service tax taken back;
  • IATA sees airlines in the black by 2011, revenue recovery in two years;
  • IATA warns of overcapacity and oil as risks.

Asia Pacific selected airlines daily share price movements (% change): 24-Mar-2010