Schiphol Group posts €287 million loss in 2021; Says slow Covid recovery underway
The Schiphol Group ended 2021 with a loss of 287 million euros, but the company is seeing a gradual recovery from the coronavirus pandemic. It ended 2020, the first year of the pandemic, with a loss of over 500 million euros, NOS reports.
The Schiphol Group airports - Schiphol, Rotterdam The Hague, and Eindhoven - had 29 million passengers travel through them in 2021. That's more than 2020's 23.5 million, but still well below the 80.5 million passengers that made their way through the airports in pre-pandemic 2019. The company expects the recovery to continue in 2022 but thinks that passenger numbers will only return to pre-Covid levels around 2024.
On paper, the Schiphol Group had a profit of 105 million euros in 2021 due to several windfalls, including 84 million euros in wage support from the government, 69 million euros returns from real estate investments, and the appreciation of shares in the Paris airport parent company (252 million euros).
Schiphol is also facing problems from a missing environmental permit. At the end of last year, legal advisers told the outgoing Cabinet that Schiphol could only remain as big as it is if drastic measures are taken in agriculture and traffic in the area around it. Otherwise, the airport will violate environmental standards. Without these measures, Schiphol could only get a permit for 400,000 flight movements per year - a decrease of 20 percent.
While commenting on the annual figures, Schiphol Group chairman Dick Benschop refrained from speculating on the environmental permit, only saying that the group is working with the Ministry of Infrastructure on the matter.