Worry over low prices

Business, Normal

The National, Friday 7th June 2013

 THE falling prices of gold and other commodities will affect the resource sector and its demands for services, Airlines PNG (APNG) chief executive Muralee Siva says.

He said this during APNG’s annual general meeting in Port Moresby yesterday.

He said despite the big potential in the PNG market, the company needed to be aware of various macro-economic challenges this year.

Siva said APNG’s 2012 financial result represented a significant loss and ongoing commitment to marketing.

“Leading performance is needed to restore confidence in the airline,” he said.

“This year, domestic inflation would continue to affect salaries and costs and competition for skilled staff continues, making staff retention one of our main challenges and priorities.

“Currency volatility affects many of the airline’s inputs … the airline’s relative position in the PNG market and its need to price its services at sustainable levels remain an ever present challenge.”

Siva said while the airline’s fleet capacity issue had in part been addressed, other problems have not been resolved.

“Limited aircraft availability in the market and restricted supply of qualified and experienced flight crew and engineering staff present difficulties,” he added. 

Despite the challenges, he said he was confident APNG would deliver value for shareholders and secure the business growth.

He told The National earlier that APNG has improved significantly on its on-time performance and this was achieved through teamwork.

“On time performance is an area where we believe we have achieved great results where now over 80% of flights are leaving within 15 minutes of scheduled departure time. 

“This is already in line with the IATA world standard and the improvement is still continuing.

“This year is a consolidation year for Airlines PNG and we see great opportunities in the domestic market in the long term,” he said.