Chinese airlines lost more than $20 billion in 2022 from regime lockdowns

An employee in a sanitary suit, with an Air China plane in the background in Beijing (Reuters) (THOMAS PETER /)

Eight Chinese airlines recently published estimates of their 2022 results, reflecting some total losses of about 142 billion yuan (21 billion US dollars) under the effect of the restrictions against the pandemic in the Asian country.

The losses of Air China amounted to approximately 38,000 million yuan (5,630 million dollars, 5,180 million euros), reported the airline, which in 2021 lost 16,640 million yuan (2,460 million dollars, 2,270 million euros).

For his part, china eastern airlines calculated that in 2022 it suffered a loss of 37,000 million yuan (5,500 million dollars, 5,000 million euros), after having lost 17,000 million yuan (2,500 million dollars, 2,300 million euros) in 2021.

Some airlines mentioned the limitations on mobility of the ‘COVID zero’ policy and the pandemic in general as factors that affected its activityinformed in the last hours the official newspaper beijing daily.

An Air China plane takes off in front of a China Southern plane (Reuters)
An Air China plane takes off in front of a China Southern plane (Reuters) (David Gray /)

In addition, the companies blamed the losses on the increase in the price of oil and fluctuations in exchange rates in 2022.

For its part, the group in charge of managing the Shanghai airports of Hongqiao and Pudong, Shanghai Airportsand the companies in charge of Guangzhou Baiyun Airport and Shenzhen Airport expect total losses of around 50 billion yuan ($7.4 billion).

Recently, the Civil Aviation Administration of China expressed optimism for 2023 and announced that It will try to recover 75% of the sector’s activity from before the pandemic.

After almost three years of harsh restrictions, confinements and practically total closure of borders that ended up crystallizing in protests, China began to dismantle ‘COVID zero’ at the beginning of December, and on January 8 it reduced from category A -level of maximum danger- to B disease management, thus effectively marking the end of this strategy.

That same date marked the end of the mandatory quarantines for passengers arriving in China, which had been in force since March 2020, and the limits on international air traffic, which had remained less than 5% of what existed before the pandemic.

(With information from EFE)

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