AoT reports 71% drop in traffic amid Covid

AoT reports 71% drop in traffic amid Covid

A worker cleans Suvarnabhumi airport on May 28, 2021. (Photo: Somchai Poomlard)
A worker cleans Suvarnabhumi airport on May 28, 2021. (Photo: Somchai Poomlard)

Airports of Thailand (AoT) is saying that it is ready to welcome international tourists under the Phuket sandbox tourism scheme, while revealing that air traffic at six of its airports dropped by 71% in the last fiscal year to the Covid-19 pandemic.

These comprise Suvarnabhumi, Don Mueang, Phuket, Chiang Mai, Mae Fah Luang–Chiang Rai, and Hat Yai international airports.

Nitinai Sirismatthakarn, president of AoT, said the number of passengers dropped by 71.5%, or 18.33 million, with only 206,000 flights, or 51.6%, in the last fiscal year (October–May) compared to the previous fiscal year, when there were about 64.20 million passengers and 425,800 flights.

Nevertheless, he said AoT is ready to welcome international visitors under the Phuket "sandbox" scheme which Thanusak Phuengdet, from Phuket's chamber of commerce, expects to generate about 13 billion baht in income.

Thailand has stepped up measures to limit air travel since the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic, resulting in a sharp drop in travel.

Mr Nitinai said AoT faced financial problems during six fiscal months (Oct 1–March 31) due to the sharp drop in passengers and air traffic.

AoT earned 3.74 billion baht in revenues from sales and services, and 792.13 million baht from other means, he said.

The company has expenses of 13.46 billion baht with an income tax of 1.85 billion baht, resulting in a loss of 7.06 billion baht, Mr Nitinai said.

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