INR 210 Billion Loss Incurred by Aviation Industry in India in FY 21: ICRA

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India’s aviation industry is expected to report a net loss of Rs 210 billion in FY21, credit rating agency ICRA said.

ICRA expects the profitability of the Indian aviation industry to be adversely impacted in FY2021 due to lower revenues and high fixed costs, estimating it will report a significant net loss of Rs 210 billion in FY2021, against net loss of Rs 127 billion in FY2020.

Besides, the industry’s debt level is estimated to increase to Rs 500 billion excluding lease liabilities over FY2021-22.

Resultantly, the industry will require additional funding of Rs 350-370 billion over FY2021 to FY2023.

ICRA Vice President Kinjal Shah said, “The two listed airlines have together lost Rs 31 crore per day during H1FY2021. As the airlines gradually recommenced domestic operations, along with continued chartered and cargo operations, thereby resulting in significantly higher yields, their daily cash burn started reducing.”

“This resulted in a lower daily loss of Rs 26 crore for the two listed airlines in Q2 FY2021, against Rs 37 crore in Q1 FY2021.”

Shah said with a sequential improvement in domestic passenger traffic, and continued cost rationalisation initiatives by the airlines, further supported by the benign aviation turbine fuel (ATF) prices, the daily cash burn for airlines has further reduced in Q3 FY2021.

As per ICRA, the recovery in domestic passenger traffic is contingent on factors such as containment of the spread of Covid-19, which, in turn, is dependent on the development of a vaccine and its wide availability, willingness of consumers to undertake leisure travel, recovery in macroeconomic growth, which in turn impacts consumer sentiments and ability to travel, Central and various state government-mandated travel restrictions and quarantine norms, and recovery in business travel.

It pointed out that ongoing increase in the number of infections, and expectations of non-availability of a vaccine on a wide scale until H2 CY2021, will in turn continue to impact consumer willingness to travel and even business travel as businesses and corporates continue their work-from-home policy.

“ICRA thus expects FY2021 to witness a higher decline of 62-64 per cent in domestic passenger traffic, than its earlier estimates of 41-46 per cent decline.

“With this, the domestic passenger traffic will reach much lower than the FY2011 levels. The recovery in air travel is expected to be gradual once the Covid-19 threat is allayed.”

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