Another challenging year has passed, with the continued emergence of different variants of COVID-19 and their consequent global impact, as well as almost 5.5 million pandemic-related deaths worldwide as of December 2021. The global economy was impacted tremendously, and the world witnessed an unprecedented impact on the aviation sector despite the rollout of vaccinations and booster shots across a large percentage of the globe.
With the extraordinary leadership of H.R.H. Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, Crown Prince, Deputy Supreme Commander and Prime Minister, Bahrain has been effectively managing the outbreak and its impact on the economy, setting up a dedicated National Taskforce to tackle the spread of the virus through various implemented measures, in addition to putting a sizable economic stimulus package in place. This has led to a slight economic recovery in 2021 compared to 2020. The aviation sector, however, remained affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, due to the spread of the many variants, with air traffic reaching only a percentage of its 2019 levels in 2021.
Within this context, BAS not only remained resilient amidst these challenging external business conditions, but has also managed to exceed expectations in terms of its financial performance, almost breaking even for the year despite the negative impact on the aviation sector. BAS continues to be highly effective and responsive to the current business environment, ensuring that its operations are run smoothly through innovative solutions, providing high quality services to our customers, and complying with the highest standards of safety, security and performance, whilst showcasing an ongoing commitment to pursuing excellence.
The resilience and responsiveness BAS have demonstrated over the past year signifies the beginning of an exciting new chapter in the history of BAS; the beginning of its transformation. During this year, Eng. Mohamed Khalil joined BAS as the new Chief Executive Officer and began his journey to lead BAS to new heights with his charismatic and transformative leadership style. Mohamed Khalil has set an inspiring vision for BAS to continue on its successful path of the achievements the company has built over more than four decades, underpinned by an understanding of the opportunities that lay ahead. He has also instilled a strong belief in the people of BAS, highlighting their expertise, talent, commitment, hard work, dedication and potential.
Some of the key initiatives BAS kick-started during the year include restructuring parts of the organization to meet business needs more effectively, initiating the deployment of sophisticated technological solutions— including the ERP and RMS systems— to replace the legacy systems, and to transform the way we work. Furthermore, and in line with the vision of H.R.H. Princess Sabeeka bint Ibrahim Al Khalifa President of the Supreme Council of Women for the empowerment and advancement of Bahraini women, BAS has established an Equal Opportunities Committee and celebrated Women’s Day to showcase the company’s appreciation for their female counterparts’ contributions.
Accordingly, the company continues to focus on its transformative journey in 2022 through five main pillars:
- Budget Optimization: BAS will optimize its 2022 budget achievements by enhancing existing businesses, maximizing revenues, controlling costs and proactively sustaining business growth.
- Efficiency: BAS will continue to improve and enhance business processes and efficiencies by targeting a lean organization, operational excellence, growing innovation, well-established documented systems and procedures, and automation drive.
- Strategy Formulation: BAS will work on formulating and executing a distinct and well-shared strategy with clear values, a shared vision, and a compelling mission. The company aims to implement it in a timely and dynamic manner, thus developing excellence to execute strong growth beyond 2022.
- Human Capital & Culture: BAS will train, retain, develop staff competencies and talent pools as well as maintain engaged and effective teams in a collaborative, responsible, trust-based and risk-tolerant culture.
- Cooperation with Stakeholders: BAS will maintain and enhance strong mutual cooperation with all stakeholders.