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Safety, innovation and an eye to the future



Safety, innovation and an eye to the future drive Airways’ result

Airways New Zealand today reported a strong operational, safety and financial performance for the half year ending 31 December 2017.

The state-owned enterprise (SOE) achieved a Net Operating Profit after Tax (NOPAT) of $18.1 million for the period, a 31% improvement on the prior year’s $13.8 million and $2.5 million ahead of budget.

Airways CEO Graeme Sumner says, “This pleasing result has been driven by a one-off gain on the sale of surplus land, increased profits in our commercial businesses and prudent cost management.”

Airways’ commercial businesses made a strong contribution to the result, achieving a NOPAT result of $3.4 million, up from $1.9 million from the same period in FY17.

Importantly, the air navigation service provider recorded no near collision incidents and achieved a technical service availability rate of 99.95%, delivered against a backdrop of continued air traffic growth.

Mr Sumner says, “We are focused on technologies that will maintain our current high levels of service and ensure greater safety, resilience and efficiency in the future and have invested $21.5 million in this area over the past six months alone.

“We have installed a digital tower demonstration at Auckland Airport, a technology that has the potential to improve the safety and performance of our aviation system, especially in the regions. And in December we commenced a three-month trial of New Zealand’s first UAV (unmanned aerial vehicle) traffic management platform.”

A $58 million project to deliver New Zealand’s new air traffic management (ATM) system remains on target to become operational in domestic airspace in 2020 and oceanic airspace in 2021.

Airways’ Chair Judy Kirk says recent growth across the aviation industry, while contributing to the positive financial result, has brought with it challenges, making the strong safety and operational performance even more pleasing.

“Excellent results like this are not possible without the hard work of our talented staff. A special mention must go to our people for keeping the skies safe and moving aircraft as efficiently as possible through periods of extreme weather and the disruption caused by the Marsden Point fuel pipeline failure,” she says.

This strong interim result is expected to contribute towards a full year result in line with the budgeted $27.0m.


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