Red tape aids Air Astana’s fortunes

EDITrex_830748a.jpgKazakh carrier Air Astana has found an unlikely driver for first quarter profitability – red tape.

In an interview with The Bangkok Post, Air Astana chief executive Peter Foster says legal, tax and bureaucratic constraints thwarted the airline’s attempts to secure fuel hedges. This unlikely saviour helped Air Astana avoid a damaging financial hit. 

Instead the airline swung from a $500,000 first quarter loss last year to a $2.3 million profit for the first three months of 2009, despite the turbulent economic climate.

In the interview Foster, who previously headed Royal Brunei, jokes: “We were professional in hedging without ever doing it.”

 

Earlier this year Foster told Airline Business Air Astana’s inability to hedge was a “blessing in disguise”, as it avoided being caught out. The full Airline Business fuel hedging article can be found here.

Picture credit: OJO Images/Rex Features

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