Weak demand for air cargo in Hong Kong and mainland China hit sales at Cathay Pacific which reported a 5.5 per cent fall in cargo revenue to HK$24,555 million (£2,115m) for 2012.
Yield for Cathay Pacific and Dragonair remained the same as last year at HK$2.42. Capacity was down by 3.1 per cent while the cargo load factor dropped by 3.0 percentage points to 64.2 per cent.
The group said that the airlines’ cargo business was affected by weak demand in major markets, particularly from Asia to Europe. Demand for shipments from the two key markets of Hong Kong and Mainland China, was well below expectations, although there were short-term upturns in March and in the last quarter. Capacity was adjusted in line with demand.
The airline’ total revenue for 2012 was up one per cent to HK$99,376m (£8,561m) but attributable profit was down 83.3 per cent to HK$916m (£79m).
Chairman Christopher Pratt said: “The Cathay Pacific Group operates in a volatile and challenging industry, one that will always be highly susceptible to external factors that remain largely beyond our control. The cost of fuel remains the biggest challenge, particularly for an airline such as ours where long-haul operations form a significant part of our total operations.”