Miami – Qatar Airways (QR) in a recently released annual report has recorded a net loss of QAR7bn for the year 2019-2020.

Total revenue and operating income increased by 6.4% to QAR 51.1 billion over the previous year. Passenger revenue grew by 8.9% with a capacity growth in available seat kilometers (ASK) of 3.2% and an increase 9.8% in passenger numbers with 32.4 million flying with the airlines.

Issues cited in the report include the blockade of Qatari airspace by regional neighbors, the liquidation of Air Italy (IG) by the majority shareholder, changes in accounting policy and reporting standards, and finally the COVID-19 pandemic.

A statement by Qatar Airways Group Chief Executive His Excellency Mr. Akbar Al Baker reads, “Despite the momentous challenges our group has faced in 2019-20, Qatar Airways Group continues to remain resilient, reporting strong underlying fundamentals. If not for the exceptional circumstances of the fiscal year 2020, our results would have been better than the year before.”

Photo: Qatar Airways

Qatar Airways amid the Pandemic

The outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic has certainly hit the airline hard but the airline has adapted well, with the network never falling below 30 destinations while maintaining service to five continents. The airline has since increased operations to over 650 weekly flights to 90 destinations in six continents.

According to the International Air Transport Association (IATA), the airline has become the largest international carrier between April and July 2020 leading to the development of safety measures for passengers and cabin crew including Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for cabin crew and complimentary face shields along with protective kits for passengers.

While grounding the Airbus A380, the airline reports that the fleet of 49 Airbus A350 and 30 Boeing 787 allow it to offer appropriate capacity for worldwide markets ranging from long-haul routes to Africa, the Americas, Europe, and Asia-Pacific regions.

The fiscal year 2019-2020 has been tough for Qatar Airways but the airline has adapted well and is better prepared for future challenges.

Featured image: Qatar Airways oneworld livery. Photo: Aidan Pullino