Air France-KLM to Report $614 Million Cargo Loss

Fiscal 2009/2010 results due Wednesday expected to show deepening losses
Air France-KLM's cargo business is set to report an annual $614 million operating loss this week, according to French newspaper Le Figaro.
The cargo unit, Europe's largest, will account for more than a third of the Franco-Dutch carrier's projected annual loss of around $1.6 billion, Le Figaro said.
Air France-KLM declined to comment on the report ahead of the release of its fiscal 2009/2010 results on Wednesday.
Air France-KLM's cargo unit lost $459 million in the nine months to December 31 compared with a year earlier loss of $70 million while revenue shrunk 26 percent to $766 million from $1.07 billion.
Air France-KLM is downsizing its freighter operations following heavy loss in the past 18 months.
The airline is transferring some of its 29 cargo aircraft to its Amsterdam-based Martinair subsidiary, and maximizing the use of cargo capacity on its passenger aircraft and "combi" passenger/cargo planes.
Air France-KLM recently sold two yet-to-be delivered 777 freighters to Federal Express. It also leased three 747-400 freighters to Russia's Air Bridge.
The carrier's closest European rival, Lufthansa, lost $210 million on its cargo operations in 2009 but says it could return to the black this year if the steep rises in volume and freight rates continue.
Lufthansa Cargo increased April traffic by 13.8 percent in April from a year ago while Air France-KLM's freight volume declined by 2 percent.

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