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Wellington Airport results for six months ended 30 September

Wellington Airport results for the six months ended 30 September 2013

8 November 2013

Wellington International Airport Limited (WIAL) is pleased to present its unaudited results for the six months ended 30 September 2013 which produced a solid performance with an underlying EBITDAF of $42.5m before subvention payments.

Wellington Airport continues its focus on route development and collaborating with its airline partners to promote the opportunity that Wellington presents. This work has seen capacity increases over the last 12 months delivering strong passenger growth with a domestic increase of 5.9% and international of 5%. Following the increases in capacity, the airport expects modest growth in the next six months.

“While there have been reductions on certain routes, working together with our airline partners has delivered new capacity and we look forward to furthering our role and contribution towards the growth of New Zealand’s travel and tourism industry,” said Steve Sanderson, Wellington Airport’s Chief Executive.

“The total number of passengers is expected to reach around 5.4 million by the end of the year and we have made significant investment in our experience for everyone arriving into and departing Wellington including new retail outlets, upgraded washrooms, a beachfront café and improved drop-off and parking areas.”

“While the half year result reflects good growth in passenger numbers and services it also reflects an on-going focus on efficiency and the airport remains one of the most efficient in Australasia.”

Mr Sanderson said $250m is forecast to be invested over the next five years in travel and tourism infrastructure to maintain and improve the passenger experience. This includes a major expansion of the Main Terminal Building, a new hotel, multi-level car park facility and noise insulation programme for neighbouring residents. Wellington Airport opened a new retail bond offer on 24 October 2013, which was extremely successful with applications accepted up to the maximum of $75 million.

In July 2013, Wellington Airport released its 2013 annual performance results to the Commerce Commission and, with a return on its aeronautical assets of 6.23%, remains under the Commission’s benchmark of 8% for the third year in a row. The airport has started consultation with airlines over the charges to use the airport’s terminal and runway services from mid-2014 to ensure that future prices, beyond 2014/15, are also in line with the Commission’s acceptable range.

“During Wellington’s local government elections there was a very strong show of support from the region and the majority of successful candidates for the need to have direct air connections with Asia. We are looking forward to consulting with stakeholders, airlines, civic partners, our local community, businesses and the region as the work towards the consent for the runway extension progresses next year.”

The initial economic study for the runway extension presented significant benefits for the region and justified commencing the consent process. However the airport is conducting a further economic impact study regarding the net benefits for the Wellington region and New Zealand Inc. This study will inform the full business case to be presented and consulted on in 2014.

This year was the 10th anniversary of the Wellington Airport Regional Community Awards and it was a privilege to support and recognise the volunteer organisations that contribute so much to the Wellington Region. In February next year Wellington welcomes the World for the New Zealand Festival and the airport is proud to be a leader partner.

“We would also like to recognise the outstanding contribution of our Chairman, David Newman, who passed away in October. David was a board member of the airport since Infratil acquired an interest in 1998 and he became Chairman in 2004. He really believed in the people who work at the airport and gave them his full support and leadership which will be missed by all.”

Wellington Airport also wants to thank Ian McKinnon for his support and guidance as a board member when he was Deputy Mayor of Wellington City. Mr McKinnon was on the board for three years and resigned in October after deciding not to stand for re-election.

ENDS

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