State-owned Emirates Airlines said today, Tuesday, that the Dubai government committed to supporting it during the Corona virus crisis, after its holding company slipped to incurring its first annual loss in more than three decades.
In its annual report, the aviation group said that the Dubai government has pumped $3.1 billion into Emirates Airlines since the start of the pandemic. The company disclosed that it injected $2 billion in capital last year.
Emirates Airlines incurred a loss of 20.28 billion dirhams (5.52 billion dollars) in a year, while the group recorded annual losses of 22.1 billion dirhams (6 billion dollars), the first in 33 years.
The airline, which is one of the largest companies in the world, recorded a decline in revenues of 66.4% to 30.9 billion dirhams, as passenger traffic fell 88.3% to only 6.5 million, due to the impact of the pandemic.
“No one knows when the world will overcome the pandemic, but we know that the recovery will be erratic,” Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman of Emirates Airlines, said in a statement.
In a previous meeting with “Al Arabiya” in May on the sidelines of the Arabian Travel Market exhibition in Dubai, Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum expressed his optimism about the performance of the travel sector in the Emirates, in particular, with the increase in the number of travelers who received the vaccine in addition to the lifting of travel restrictions in many of countries.
He also pointed out that the aviation sector’s activity is currently only 35% of what it was before the Corona pandemic.
On the other hand, Tim Clark, President of Emirates Airlines, explained in an online recorded interview with aviation consultant John Strickland for the Arabian Travel Market exhibition, that the performance of “Emirates Airlines” is better than it initially expected, and “We are much better than We thought we’d be at it by this time,” according to Reuters.
“I’m not saying it’s good,” he added. “It’s just better than we thought we would be when we set out our visions in the spring of last year.”
Clark stressed that he had no doubts about the return of international travel in large numbers.
Emirates, one of the world’s largest long-haul airlines, has a fleet of about 140 Boeing 777-300s in addition to 115 Airbus A380s.