Juneyao Airlines reported a 2017 first-half net profit of CNY624.9 million ($92.1 million), down 12% over net income of CNY710.2 million in the year-ago period because of higher fuel prices.

First-half operating revenue jumped 23.4% year-over-year (YOY) to CNY5.9 billion while operating expenses rose 33.3% to CNY4.7 billion.

The Shanghai-based carrier cited a jump in fuel prices to CNY1.4 billion, which accounted for 29.6% of total operating expenses in the first half of the year.

Passenger boardings increased 26.7% YOY to 7.9 million with an average load factor of 87.1%, up 1.01 points over the year-ago period. Capacity rose 23.4% YOY to 15.2 billion ASKs against a 24.9% increase in passenger revenue to 13.2 billion RPKs. Cargo traffic volume grew 23.7% YOY to 40,757 tonnes.

As of June 30, Juneyao operated 63 Airbus A320 family aircraft and its Guangzhou-based LCC subsidiary 9 Air operated 11 Boeing 737s, totaling 74 aircraft with an average fleet age of 3.85 years.

Looking ahead, the company is scheduled to take begin Boeing 787-900 deliveries from the second half of 2018 and plans to utilize the widebody to open intercontinental routes. The carrier finalized an order for five 787-9s, plus five options, in February.

Juneyao became the first Star Alliance connecting partner in May.