Submit Press release  ∑ eTN Team ·  Advertising  ·  eTN Awards  - Worldtourism Events    

Emirates Airlines

Emirates net profit almost triples


DUBAI -- Emirates Airline said Thursday its first-half net profit almost tripled as it cut costs and benefitted from lower fuel prices, but the company warned that demand for air travel is unlikely to pickup for at least a year.

The Middle East's largest carrier said net profit for the six-month period ended Sept. 30 rose to 752 million U.A.E. dirhams ($205 million) from 284 million dirhams a year earlier, the airline said in an emailed statement. Revenue fell 14% to 19.8 billion dirhams as the airline carried fewer passengers and cargo.

"The months since the global meltdown have really tested our mettle," Emirates Airline Chairman Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum said in an emailed statement.

Emirates cut its expenditure by 16% to 19 billion dirhams, helped by cost-containment measures and lower jet fuel prices, the carrier said.

The jump in Emirates' profit could send a positive signal regarding the health of Dubai's tourism and investment-dependent economy. Emirates is considered the jewel in the crown of the business empire of Dubai's ruler, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al Maktoum.

Once buoyed by soaring oil revenue, airlines in the Gulf region, like others around the world, are now feeling the impact of falling passenger numbers and weakening demand for business and first class traffic.

Real-estate development in Dubai, which has fueled local growth and drawn foreign residents and investors, has plummeted. Tourist numbers, meanwhile, which have served as the backbone for Emirates Airline's expansion, have also fallen.

"While some say the green shoots of economy recovery are sprouting, we expect it will take at least another year or two, before demand for air transport and travel services starts picking up again," Chairman Sheikh Ahmed said.

In September, the International Air Transport Association, or IATA, cut its forecast for expected losses for Middle East carriers this year to $500 million, from $1.5 billion predicted earlier in the year.

Emirates said its cash position at the end of the first half fell to 6.7 billion dirhams compared with 7.4 billion dirhams at the beginning of 2009 due to the airline financing pre-delivery payments of new aircraft on order, building projects in Dubai and an upgrading the interiors in some of its existing fleet.

Emirates currently operates a fleet of 139 aircraft. Its order-book currently stands at 156 aircraft, with a total value of approximately $50 billion.

Emirates net profit almost triples
Image via


Premium Partners