Regional airlines fall behind on transparency

03 June 2008
Middle East airlines are lagging behind global industry leaders when it comes to reporting a wider range of company information, research has revealed.

The international audit firm KPMG surveyed 50 leading airlines to establish their level of reporting of non-financial information.

The report found no Middle East carriers that publish environmental, economic and social information, which would provide a fuller picture of the company’s performance to shareholders and the wider public.

Europe led the field, with 71 per cent of carriers producing some form of non-mandatory information. The second best region was Australia and New Zealand with 67 per cent.

The Middle East was not alone in its lack of non-financial transparency. The survey also found no African or South American airlines that produce such reports, while in North America, only 7 per cent of carriers did so.

Speaking to MEED at the annual general meeting of the International Air Transport Association (IATA) in Istanbul, the author of the report, KPMG’s global head of aviation, Martin Sheppard, acknowledged that the performance of Middle East carriers was unsurprising given that many airlines in the region remain under state ownership and that, in the majority of cases, full financial disclosure remains in its infancy.

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