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VICTORIA – BC Ferries’ traffic, revenue, net earnings and expenditures are all up, however the financial results for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2022 (fiscal 2022) are still lagging behind pre-pandemic levels.
During the year, BC Ferries carried 17.9 million passengers and 8.5 million vehicles, an increase of 37 per cent and 26 per cent, respectively, compared to the prior year. While these increases are significant, passenger and vehicle traffic were 20 per cent and 5 per cent lower respectively, compared to the same period in fiscal 2019, a pre-COVID 19 year.
“As we emerge from the pandemic, we are grateful to our employees for their commitment to put safety first, operate in the public interest, and ensure reliable ferry travel,” said Mark Collins, BC Ferries’ President and CEO. “We are excited to see people travelling with us again and are adding staff to meet the increase in demand for our service.”
In the year ended March 31, 2022, BC Ferries experienced a net loss of $68.2 million prior to recognizing Safe Restart Funding. After recognizing $102.3 million of this federal-provincial funding, net earnings were $34.1 million, an increase of $13.1 million compared to the previous year, which included $186.0 million in Safe Restart Funding.
In December 2020, BC Ferries received $308 million through the Safe Restart Program, a federal-provincial initiative intended to help provinces and territories safely restart their economies. Assistance to the public transportation sector, including BC Ferries, has been a critical part of the BC Safe Restart Plan. Without this funding, BC Ferries would have recorded a total loss of $233.2 million over the past two years ($68.2 million in fiscal 2022 and $165.0 million in fiscal 2021). The operating relief component of the Safe Restart Funding BC Ferries received has now been exhausted. The company does not foresee the need for any further COVID relief funding.
In fiscal the year ended March 31, 2022, revenue was $965.4 million, an increase of $100.1 million or 12 per cent compared to the prior year, primarily as a result of higher traffic volumes and net retail sales, partially offset by lower Safe Restart Funding.
Operating expenses in fiscal 2022 were $868.0 million, an increase of $88.2 million or 11 per cent compared to the prior year. This increase is mainly due to increases in the number of sailings provided, staff required to provide more service, fuel and maintenance expenses.
Despite the pandemic, BC Ferries continued to make significant investments in new vessels, vessel upgrades, terminal infrastructures and information technology. Capital expenditures for fiscal 2022 totalled $171.3 million, up from $122.0 million in the prior year. BC Ferries continues to modernize the fleet and reduce its carbon footprint with the introduction of new ships. During fiscal 2022, four more battery-electric hybrid Island Class vessels and one more liquefied natural gas-fuelled Salish Class vessel were delivered to BC Ferries.
BC Ferries’ full financial statements, including notes and Management’s Discussion and Analysis, are filed on SEDAR and will be available at www.sedar.com.
BC Ferries, Media Relations
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BC Ferries is one of the largest ferry operators in the world based on passengers transported annually and transportation infrastructure, and carried 17.9 million passengers and 8.5 million vehicles during the fiscal year ended March 31, 2022. BC Ferries provides frequent year-round ferry transportation services to the west coast of Canada on 25 routes, currently supported by 39 vessels and 47 terminals, and also manages other remote routes through contracts with independent operators.
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