Saturday, November 8, 2008

Air Mauritius loses €11m in first half

Air Mauritius on Thursday reported an €11-million half-year loss due to high oil prices and falling demand.

The airline said passenger numbers between April and September this year fell to 596,587 from 613,304 during the same period last year.

The Indian Ocean island is a popular holiday destination but this year's spike in crude prices and the European economic slowdown have weighed heavily on its tourism industry.

"The company for its part made a loss of €11-million for the half year to 30 September 2008, compared to a profit of €2-million during the same period last year," said a company report issued by the Mauritius Stock Exchange.

"The company's operating revenue increased by 8,6% to €17-million," it said. "However, this increase was not enough to cover the increase in operating costs arising from a fuel bill which increased sharply by €32,1-million."