Aviation authority records net loss of $1.6m

The Fijian Parliament in session. Picture: PARLIAMENT OF FIJI/FILE

The Civil Aviation Authority of Fiji (CAAF) reported a net loss of $1.6 million for the year ended on December 31, states CAAF’s 2020 annual report that was presented in Parliament on Friday.

The entity had recorded a loss of $572,600 the previous year. CAAF says 2020 had been a very challenging one for the nation with the COVID-19 pandemic and the devastating effects it had had on the Fijian economy.

“The aviation industry has not been spared; the combination of border closures, travel restrictions and quarantine measures has resulted in a significant decrease in air travel demand since March 2020,” states the annual report.

“With the significant decline in international air travel, the Civil Aviation Authority of Fiji’s (CAAF) share of the airport departure tax, which accounted for approximately 61 per cent of our annual revenue, has diminished.

“In addition, major aviation players have also been significantly impacted due to the closure of borders and travel restrictions implemented. This has had a flow-on effect to CAAF.

“Some small private aerodrome operators established to service private resorts have temporarily closed their operations and this has also impacted revenue received by CAAF in aerodrome certification fees.

“Since April 2021, the authority has seen a resurgence of the COVID-19 virus across the country and to ensure CAAF survives this second wave, it had to readjust the way business operates without causing disruptions to its services.

“New procedures and adjustments have been necessary as a result of risk assessments that are made based on the evolution of the pandemic here in Fiji.

“Whilst the financial impact is consistent with the initial outbreak, the Authority remains committed in ensuring its safety oversight and supports the Ministry of Health and Medical Services efforts in the fight against this coronavirus disease.”

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