In the face of the increasing toll the coronavirus outbreak is having on aviation worldwide, Fraport has begun slashing costs.
“Passenger and cargo traffic with China, and Asia overall, has already slumped massively. This is also having a major impact on Frankfurt Airport’s hub operations – affecting all business areas from flight operations to ground handling, cargo and retail,” the airport operator says.
To counteract this situation, Fraport is responding with a range of measures to lower costs and to adjust staff deployment to this reduced demand.
Currently, all major costs are being reviewed closely with new staff hires at Fraport AG only possible in exceptional and justified cases. Employees in both administrative and operational jobs have been offered voluntary unpaid vacation or temporary reduced working hours – where this is compatible with operational requirements. Fraport says it is monitoring these measures continuously and will make modifications if required.
Stefan Schulte, Fraport AG’s executive board chairman, emphasises: “The coronavirus epidemic comes at a time when Germany’s aviation industry, in particular, is already facing significant challenges. In April, an increase in the German aviation tax will unilaterally strain our industry even more.
“However, aviation has survived a number of crises in the last few decades and emerged stronger every time. We are responding decisively to this difficult situation with our timely countermeasures,” Schulte adds.
While Fraport notes it is too early to reliably forecast the duration and extent of flight cancellations, as well as the resulting decline in traffic volumes and as a result it is not yet possible to estimate the impact on its business. Fraport will issue its guidance for the current fiscal year at the company’s annual financial press conference on 13 March 2020.