Malta International Airport plc - Interim Results

Malta International Airport plc published its interim results to 30 September 2006 following a Board of Directors’ meeting held on 30 November.

On the same day the Directors declared a net interim dividend of 2c5 per share, unchanged on last year. The interim dividend is payable to those shareholders as at close of trading on Friday 1 December for settlement on 6 December 2006.

Following a recent announcement, the company noted in its half-year report that the end of its financial year has been altered and will terminate in December instead of in March. Therefore, the current financial year will be for a 9-month period from 1 April to 31 December 2006.

During the period from 1 April to 30 September 2006, MIA’s total operating income edged 0.4% lower to Lm10.2 million despite a 2.5% drop in passenger departures. The breakdown of the various categories of revenue reveals that the drop in income was mainly attributed to lower concession income. Revenue generated from the passenger service charge was marginally unchanged over the comparative period at Lm5.8 million, mainly due to higher charges which offset the decrease in passenger numbers. As from 1 April 2006, the passenger service charge increased from Lm6.65 to Lm6.80 per departing passenger. Income from the passenger service charge remains the largest contributor to the Company’s total income with a share of 56.5% during the period under review. Other aviation fees comprising landing, parking and security fees increased marginally to Lm1.77 million. Revenue generated from the concessionaries of the retail outlets dropped by 7.1% to Lm1.36 million (2005: Lm1.46 million) whilst other sources of income increased by 5.6% to Lm1.3 million.

Operating costs incurred by the Company during the first six months of the year amounted to Lm5.7 million, 2.8% higher than the previous interim period. The Directors attribute this rise to increases in the cost of utilities (water and electricity bills), insurance and staff training.

Against a background of higher costs and marginally lower levels of turnover, MIA’s operating profit in the six months to 30 September 2006 dropped 4.3% to Lm4.5 million (2005: Lm4.7 million).

Higher investment income coupled with a substantial decrease in finance costs of circa Lm100,000, resulting from the successful re-negotiation of the borrowing facilities, saw the Company’s pre-tax profits only edge 1.7% lower from the comparative period to Lm4.1 million. After accounting for taxation, the profit for the period amounted to Lm2.69 million compared to Lm2.73 million in the six months to 30 September 2005 translating into an earnings per share figure of 3c97 (September 2005: 4c04).

The Company’s assets as at 30 September 2006 amounted to Lm51.7 million with shareholders’ funds at Lm22.8 million. Based on the total number of shares in issue of 67,650,000, MIA’s net asset value per share is of Lm0.337. The annualised return on equity (profit after tax dividend by average shareholders’ funds) is of 23.5% (2005: 23.8%) with annualised return on assets (pre-tax profit divided by average assets) of 15.9% (2005: 16.2%).

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