Thursday, 7 May 2015

Emirates Soars as Sledgehammer Looms

The ascendancy of one of the Gulf's finest carriers continues to soar with news of a 40per cent jump in annual profits.

Emirates, one of the world's largest airlines announced a profit of some 4.6 billion Dirham (£1 billion $1.52 billion) in the last financial year. This massive jump in profit is largely due to the drop in oil prices, saving the airline around 2 billion Diaham last year alone.   Revenue also increased 7 per cent year on year to some 88.8 billion dirhams.

Their ground and tourism operation, Dnata, also recorded a massive 34 per cent rise in profits, climbing it 5.5 bilion Dirhams.  

The Dubai based airline said earlier this week it will deliver a "sledgehammer" in response to a report created by US Airlines alleging the main Gulf airlines of pocketing more than $40 billion in unfair government subsidies. Emirates president Tim Clark said  "Having read the report, you could drive a bulldozer through just about everything ... We will deal a sledgehammer to that report as far as Emirates and Dubai is concerned," 

Tim Clark didn't mention when such a response would be delivered, but the carriers CEO Sheikh Ahmed Al Maktoum told reporters in Dubai earlier this week that it would be fair if it had two years to put together a reply since the US carriers took that long to create their report.

On a dramatic personal level, Clark, who said said he would resign if the US report proved accurate, called on the chiefs of the three main airlines responsible for these accusations to follow suit if they are disproved.  "If you are wrong, and we show you to be wrong ... will you resign? What will do when this rebuttal comes back at you and shows the political entities that you've managed to orchestrate to come behind you that you are fundamentally wrong?"

American Airlines, Delta Air Lines and United Airlines claimed in January that Emirates, Etihad Airways and Qatar Airways grabbed over $40 billion in state subsidies in the last decade, allowing them to drive down ticket prices and push competitors out of key markets.

Over 250 members of the US Congress have signed a letter urging the an investigating and consultation with the governments of  Qatar and the United Arab Emirates over the allegations.

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