Turkish Airlines reported a 47 per cent increase in cargo revenue to US$4 billion for the year ended December 31, 2021 compared to US$2.7 billion in 2020 on cargo operations continuing at full capacity with freighters and about 15 wide body passenger aircraft being utilised for cargo operations.
The total revenue of the airline company during the fourth quarter of 2021 was US$3.3 billion, surpassing the same period in 2019. As for the cargo revenue, which is 39 per cent of the total revenue, it recorded a 172 per cent increase compared to the same period in 2019.
While cargo revenue carried by passenger aircraft more than doubled (161 per cent) to US$1.2 billion, revenue from cargo aircraft operations was up 25 per cent to US$2.8 billion.
Turkish carried 1.87 million tonnes cargo in 2021, an increase of 22 per cent from 2019 (comparison made with 2019 to account for COVID restrictions of flights in 2020).
Domestic cargo carried dropped 21 per cent to 55,427 tonnes, international cargo increased 24 per cent to 1.8 million tonnes.
“According to data revealed by The International Air Transport Association (IATA), Turkish Cargo ranked in fifth place among global air cargo carriers excluding integrated cargo carriers in 2021 in terms of carried cargo tonnage. Turkish Airlines takes firm steps forward to be one of the largest air cargo carriers in the world by increasing its market share in the global air cargo market,” says the management in its board activity report released with the annual results.
While travel restrictions have not been lifted completely worldwide, Turkish Airlines has been able to carry 45 million passengers and reached 60 percent of 2019 levels in 2021. “Total capacity (Available Seat Kilometres) in 2021 reached 68 percent of 2019 levels. According to the European Organisation for the Safety of Air Navigation (Eurocontrol), based on the average number of daily flights considered. Turkish Airlines has been ranked first in Europe with an average of 938 daily flights among network carriers in 2021.”
The airline reported net sales of US$10.7 billion compared to US$6.7 billion in 2020 – an increase of 60 per cent, and swung to a profit of US$959 million from a loss of US$836 million last year.
At the end of December 2021, the airline possessed one of the world’s youngest and most modern fleets with 370 aircraft, 246 of them narrow-body and 104 of them wide-body, along with 20 cargo aircraft.