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Cathay Pacific expects profit for first half of 2023 as demand rebounds


(Reuters) -Cathay Pacific Airways forecast a consolidated profit for the first half of 2023 on Friday, after multiple years of pandemic-related border closures and strict quarantine measures.

Hong Kong’s flagship carrier parked much of its fleet during the pandemic due to a lack of demand. The airline was also hit by COVID-related flight cancellations and drastic headcount reductions owing to quarantine restrictions.

“The Cathay Group has seen a strong rebound in the performance of our airlines (and) our cash flow has continued to improve,” the airline said in a statement, adding that the group had been operating cash generative so far in 2023.

The airline carried about 6.3 million passengers in the first five months of 2023, compared with a meagre figure of about 185,000 last year.

For the 12 months ended Dec. 31, Cathay Pacific had reported a loss attributable to ordinary shareholders of HK$7.16 billion ($914.43 million).

It is expected to post a profit of HK$3.44 billion this year, based on estimates from Refinitiv Eikon.

($1 = 7.8300 Hong Kong dollars)

(Reporting by Harish Sridharan in Bengaluru; Editing by Rashmi Aich and Subhranshu Sahu)

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