Philippine Airlines yr to March net profit up 63.4%


MANILA (XFNews-ASIA) - Philippine Airlines Inc said its year to March net profit rose 63.4 pct, supported by increased passenger and cargo revenues, which offset the negative impact of costlier fuel.

In its financial report filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, the unlisted firm said net profit came in at 28.74 mln usd, from 17.6 mln the year before.

Revenue grew 15 pct to 1.24 bln usd, with passenger sales accounting for 1.0 bln usd, or 81 pct of the total.  

Revenue from cargo operations rose 11 pct to 116.63 mln usd.

Expenses totaled 17.9 mln usd, up 59 pct from 11.26 mln the previous year.

Local media reports last week quoted PAL president Jaime Bautista as saying that the airline, currently controlled by Filipino-Chinese tycoon Lucio Tan, would consider an initial public offering as early as 2008 if it can sustain its profitability.

Bautista earlier said PAL aimed to post record high earnings in the current fiscal year as it drops unprofitable routes and increase flights to destinations where there is heavy passenger traffic.

He also previously disclosed PAL's plan to borrow 840 mln usd from an export credit agency and commercial banks to fund a major refleeting program.

In December, PAL sealed a purchase agreement with Airbus, with deliveries of the new airplanes expected to commence in the second half of this year.

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