Halal Industry

Saudi Airlines Catering sees red in second quarter as pandemic grounded air travel

Saudi Airlines Catering Co. posted a loss of 143.8 million riyals for the three months ending June 30 as the pandemic disrupted travel and business activities. It made a profit of 117.1 million riyals for the same three months in 2019.

The company, which provides catering services to airlines, saw its sales slump by 79.23% to 113.1 million riyals compared to 544.5 million riyals for the second quarter last year.

In a bourse filing on August 13 the company said the first two months of the year saw “normal business activity levels” before being disrupted by the pandemic that grounded almost all air travel.

For the six-month period of January to June 2020, Saudi Airlines Catering incurred a loss of 128.2 million riyals as sales slumped but fixed costs remained the same.


International air passenger demand dropped 43% from January to April, with a 98% plunge in April, according to a report from the UNWTO.

In Saudi Arabia, air travel started slowing from the end of February when authorities stopped all umrah inbound passengers in an effort to limit the spread of the COVID-19.

The hajj this year, that ended on August 2, was also limited to only 1,000 pilgrims who were already resident in Saudi Arabia.

The Saudi government grounded international flights from March 15 and they remain suspended todate.

Domestic flights were grounded on March 21 and only started taking off again on May 31.

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