Christchurch Airport interim dividend over-delivers for the city

Christchurch Airport interim dividend over-delivers for the city

Christchurch Airport

Christchurch Airport has released a half-year result which will deliver to the city a higher interim dividend than forecast, from a total operating revenue of $115.5m for the six months to 31 December 2023. 

Interim financial highlights (first half of FY24):

  •    Total income up 19.9% compared to same period last year
  •    Net surplus after tax of $21.5m, an increase of 34% on same period last year
  •    Declared interim dividend of $19.0m – above forecast 
  •    Passenger numbers 11.5% higher than same period last year

Chair of Christchurch International Airport Limited (CIAL) Sarah Ottrey says strong visitor numbers, coupled with the strength of our commercial tenant portfolio, mean we can give the city a higher than forecast interim dividend of $19m. 

She says Christchurch Airport continues to deliver for the city in these challenging economic times through growing dividend returns and the doubling of its value over the past 10 years. 

”The return of the airport’s international airlines plus the addition of United Airlines brought hundreds of thousands of visitors, and resulting economic benefit, to the city over summer,” she says.

“Our airline partners have shown great confidence in Christchurch, as does United Airlines starting the first direct service between our city and San Francisco. 

“The airline services are a direct result of passengers wanting to come here and it is clear Christchurch as a city is more attractive than ever to visitors.” 

The first six months of FY24 has seen the airport record a stronger than forecast first half year result to 31 December 2023. This is based on continuing recovery in passenger numbers contributing to growth in aeronautical and commercial tenancy revenues, as well as ongoing strong performance within the investment property portfolio.

Chief Executive Justin Watson says: “Changes made to the business over the past eight years, including investing in commercial property to diversify revenue streams and rebuilding international connections, meant the airport was well positioned going into the COVID-19 pandemic. This enabled us to restart quickly and capitalise on opportunities such as the appeal of Christchurch as a visitor destination”.

Total passenger numbers for the first six months of FY24 (3.14 million) were up 11.5% on the same period last year (91.6% of FY19 levels). Domestic passenger numbers were at 97% of FY19 levels and international at 76%. International routes and connections now exceed those serviced pre-pandemic, with China Southern Airlines and Cathay Pacific restarting services, and United Airlines beginning new direct services from San Francisco.   

The airport’s new approach to minimising waste, and assisting other airports with their sustainability measures, was recognised during the period, when Airports Council International Asia-Pacific awarded Christchurch Airport the ‘Green Airports Recognition 2023’ and the ‘Airport Carbon Accreditation – Mentor’.

CIAL’s continuing focus on decarbonising its own operations has seen the airport become one of only ten global airports to achieve ACA Level 5. This achievement was announced at the UNFCCC COP28 conference in Dubai in December, when the ACA Level 5 programme was launched. 

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