Malta International Airport plc - Interim Results & Dividend

The Board of Directors of Malta International Airport plc met on 21 November to discuss and approve the financial statements for the half-year ended 30 September 2005 and proposed a net dividend of 2c5 per share, which is to be paid to those shareholders on the company’s share register as at 30 November 2005.

During the half-year to 30 September 2005, MIA’s total operating income increased by 2.4% to Lm10.3 million. The Directors note that despite a marginal decrease in passengers over the same period last year, the slight rise in turnover is due to the increase in aviation related tariffs and a rise in some commercial revenue. The breakdown of the various categories of revenue show that income from the passenger service charge rose by 1.6% to Lm5.8 million notwithstanding the fewer passenger departures in the first six months of the year (between April and October total departures dropped by 0.4% to 872,675). The rise in revenue despite a drop in passenger departures reflects the 2% increase in the passenger service charge from Lm6.52 to Lm6.65 per departing passenger which became effective as from 1 April 2005. Income from the passenger service charge remains the largest contributor of total income with a share of 56.5% during the first six months under review. Other aviation fees comprising landing, parking and security fees increased marginally to Lm1.76 million. Revenue generated from the concessionaries of the retail outlets increased by 1.5% to Lm1.46 million, accounting for 14.3% of total operating income. During the half-year to 30 September 2005, other sources of income increased by 9.8% to Lm1.24 million, contributing 12.1% to the Company’s total income.

Operating costs incurred by the company during the first six months of the year amounted to Lm5.56 million, a 5.2% increase over the costs during the comparative period last year. The Directors attribute this rise to increases in the cost of utilities (water and electricity bills), insurance and staff training. This rise in costs resulted in a marginal drop in the operating profit during the first six months of the year to Lm4.7 million.

Investment income amounted to only a marginal Lm22,903 whilst the interest payable on the outstanding loan amounted to Lm0.5 million, a rise of 4.7% over the interest expenses during the six months to September 2004. This rise reflects the 25 basis point increase in the central intervention rate during the beginning of the Company’s financial year.

The Company’s profit before tax during the period under review amounted to Lm4.2 million, 2.5% lower than the pre-tax profit generated in the six months to September 2004. MIA’s post-tax profit of Lm2.7 million translates into an earnings per share of 4c04 (September 2004: 4c15).

During the Board Meeting held on 21 November the Directors approved the payment of a gross interim dividend of 3c85 per share (net dividend of 2c5). This dividend is payable to all shareholders on the Company’s register as at close of business on Wednesday 30 November 2005. This year’s interim dividend is identical to that distributed during the first six months of last year.

The Company’s assets as at the end of September 2005 amounted to Lm52.2 million with shareholders' funds at Lm22.9 million. Based on the total number of shares in issue of 67,650,000, MIA’s net asset value per share stands at 33c9.