The current geopolitical situation in the Middle East region has affected the wider aviation sector, and the Dubai-based Emirates airline is also not immune to its impact, the Emirates chairman confirmed.
“When it comes to the aviation business, we always want to be in a safe environment. When we think about war, it helps nobody. Would it really affect the business? We see a small impact, and we hope that it will not continue,” Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman and CEO of the Emirates airline and Group, said.
When asked whether the impact could affect the airline’s performance in H2 after a record first half saw Emirates report a profit of AED 9.4 billion
($ 2.6 billion) last week, Sheikh Ahmed replied: “We did good in the first six months, and the next six months will also be good.” He added that if there had been no geopolitical crisis, fuel prices may have had the same effect.
Sheikh Ahmed’s comments came on the same day as an announcement by Etihad Aviation Group's CEO, Antonoaldo Neves, that Abu Dhabi–based Etihad Airways remained “committed” to fly to Israel despite the current geopolitical tensions in the region, with the Israel–Gaza war now in its second month.
“In case of Israel, we are committed to the market. As long as it is safe to fly, we will continue,” Neves told Zawya. “We can’t turn our backs on the market when there are difficulties. It’s good to see airlines like Emirates and flydubai committed as well.”
(Reporting by Bindu Rai, editing by Seban Scaria)