Greece’s Aegean Airlines posts full-year loss on pandemic impact

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Greece’s largest carrier Aegean Airlines on Monday reported a full-year net loss for 2020 as passenger traffic fell amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Aegean said its net loss was 227.9 million euros ($270.8 million) compared with a net profit of 78.5 million euros in 2019. Sales fell 68.3% to 415.1 million euros.

Aegean, a member of the Star Alliance airline group, said the resurgence of the pandemic and renewed restrictive measures imposed across Europe and Greece “heavily impacted” load factors in the fourth quarter, with passenger traffic down by 77%.

“2020 was certainly the most difficult year in aviation history,” Chief Executive Officer Dimitris Gerogiannis said in a statement.

The airline will enhance resilience and competitiveness once restrictions are gradually lifted, he said.

The start of 2021 has also been heavily affected by restrictions to stem the spread of the pandemic with Aegean expecting a gradual but significant recovery in the second half as long as vaccinations continue, Gerogiannis said.

The company expects to take delivery of its fourth A321 neo and ninth Airbus A320 neo jets in May as part of a fleet renewal plan that includes 46 new aircraft up to 2026.