Emirates Airlines has upped the ante in the battle to dominate the world’s skies by announcing the purchase of 32 Airbus A380 Super Jumbos for a total bill of $11.5billion. The airline is now expecting delivery of 90 Super Jumbo planes by 2017.
The Middle East’s biggest carrier, Emirates only began flying in 1985 with a total of two planes. Since then the airline has grown to rival Singapore Airlines and Qantas for routes and traffic between East Asia and Europe and now has its eye on the European market.
Last year Emirates saw a net profit of $953million with expected revenue for 2010 totaling $1.16billion. Industry commentators, particularly rivals, say that Emirates growth has happened because of unfair benefits offered to the carrier by its owner, the Dubai government, which has enticed airline carriers to land in Dubai by charging very low fees. As a result, Dubai has achieved the status of a global hub for airlines.
The news that Emirates is upping its A380 Super Jumbo stock will mean the airline has plenty of new seats to offer passengers flying on key routes, such as London to Dubai. More seats will mean prices decrease and Emirates is already offering some cheaper deals than rivals. All of which will put more pressure on European airlines to deliver similar deals at a time when Europe’s airlines are suffering massive losses and, particularly in BA’s case, facing industrial action from disgruntled staff.
Amidst surprise at the new Emirates order, announced at the Berlin Air Show, Lufthansa Chief Executive, Wolfgang Mayrhuber, described the size of Emirates operation as ‘a miracle’ when the population of the ‘home market’ was taken into account.
Emirates are less concerned though, with Tim Clark, Emirates Airlines MD, saying that it was not his job to worry about other airlines and if Emirates were cheaper than the rest, then ‘so be it.’Paul Holdsworth, Staff Writer, Gulf Jobs Market News