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German Lufthansa is growing in Scandinavia and its future here look great despite uncertainty in the sector as wholeWednesday, 22 February 2012
German carrier, Lufthansa's traffic to the Scandinavia and the Baltic countries last year rose by a fifth signalling that Norwegian, the Norwegian budget airliner, might not be the only challenger to SAS.
The German airline also hopes that the increased traffic this year, including that which might start this summer with increased flying from several Nordic cities to Berlin’s airport will be a real boost.
The number of passengers in the Nordic and Baltic countries grew by 19 percent to 4 million last year. This region is the fourth largest market for Lufthansa after Germany, USA and Italy, and the third most important market in terms of business travellers. In the world Lufthansa passenger numbers grew by around 11 percent to 65.5 million passengers.
Sometimes there were rumours that Lufthansa was getting interested in buying SAS. But that has been properly rejected by the company’s European communications manager, Aage Dünhaupt. The company will in the coming years put in concentrate steps on strengthening its own position, including a savings program that will reduce annual costs by around €1.5 billion by 2014.
“Our focus is now on our own company and our management programs that will improve our profit margins. Our space to reflect on other activities is limited, says Dünhaupt.
Within a very short time, several European airlines have gone bankrupt, and Lufthansa is pressed like many other traditional airlines by competition from both low cost and overseas airlines and as well as state-owned companies.
“We have seen several airlines going bankrupt and there will probably be more bankruptcies this year. One of the reasons why the margins are low in the industry is that many companies are selling their tickets too cheap because they do not need to report a profit. We are not in that position, we are not protected by any state,” says Harro Julius Petersen, Nordic Head of Lufthansa.
In early June this year when the new airport opens in Berlin, Lufthansa will open several new lines, including two daily flights from Stockholm to the German capital in cooperation with SAS.
By Scancomark.se Team
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