China Eastern Airlines (NYSE: CEA, SHA: 600115, HKG: 0670), the nation's third biggest carrier that recently reported a ¥13.9 billion loss for 2008, may turn itself around by 2010, executive director Ma Xulun told a press conference in Hong Kong. "Hopefully we will cut losses this year, break even in 2010 and talk about positive gross margin a year later," said Ma. "Our budget for aircrafts is cut by 32% to ¥6.4 billion this year, while other spending is to rise 24% to ¥3.6 billion." The airlines has received ¥7 billion bailout from the government and ¥76 billion in loans from China Construction Bank (SHA: 601939, HKG: 0939), China Minsheng Bank (SHA: 600016), Agricultural Bank of China and China Development Bank since Dec. CEA has captured a 32% marekt share in Shanghai where it is headquartered. Its smaller local rival, Shanghai Airlines (SHA: 600591) that handles only domestic flights, has a 15% share. China Eastern has vowed to lift the share to 40%.

$1 = ¥6.8


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