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EasyJet says to land record profits despite disruption

EasyJet, which flies mainly throughout Europe, recently cancelled about 1,700 flights for the summer season owing to air traffic
EasyJet, which flies mainly throughout Europe, recently cancelled about 1,700 flights for the summer season owing to air traffic control disruption.

British airline EasyJet on Thursday said it expected record pre-tax profits during the current peak summer season despite strike action by air traffic controllers and other disruptions.

During its third quarter to the end of June, EasyJet posted profit before tax of £203 million ($262 million), compared with a loss of £114 million one year earlier.

"We continue to see good momentum as we move into Q4 where we... expect to deliver another record profit-before-tax performance," chief executive Johan Lundgren said in the earnings statement.

"We are absolutely focused on mitigating the impact of the challenging external environment on our customers and flying them on their well-earned holidays," he added.

EasyJet, which flies mainly throughout Europe, recently canceled about 1,700 flights for the summer season owing to air control disruption.

The airline blamed strike action by as well as "constrained air space" owing to the war in Ukraine.

The bulk of cancelations, equivalent to almost the number of daily operated by the carrier, concern trips to and from London's Gatwick airport.

France in particular has been hit by air traffic control strikes, while Gatwick is facing its own summer of industrial action by ground staff.

Despite EasyJet's upbeat outlook as the recovers from COVID-fuelled turbulence, the company's share price dropped 1.3 percent in early London trading.

"EasyJet is clearly on a strong flight path, but the share price recovery still has far to go," noted Richard Hunter, head of markets at Interactive Investor.

Airlines' market values crashed in the wake of the COVID pandemic that grounded the aviation sector.

© 2023 AFP

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