Emirates denies receiving fuel subsidies
Emirates does not receive any fuel subsidies or any other subsidies from the Dubai Government, its president Tim Clark said on Tuesday, GN reported.
"For the thousandth time, I am saying that Emirates does not receive any subsidies," Clark said at the Chief Executive Forum at the 64th annual general meeting of the International Air Transport Association (IATA), during a free-wheeling debate on the challenges faced by the global airline industry.
In the discussion moderated by the BBC's Nik Gowing, Clark was optimistic about Emirates's growth prospects despite fuel price concerns voiced by the other experts on the panel, notably Jean-Cyriel Spinetta of Air France.
Clark reiterated that Emirates was on track to achieve 15-20 per cent growth this year, although he conceded the possibility of fuel surcharges in the near future.
On surging fuel prices, Clark agreed with IATA the director-general's view earlier in the day that governments need to understand that fuel prices at $130 a barrel will have a "profound effect" on the global economy. "It will be a question of survival for some airlines," he said.
Clark, however, does not see oil hitting $200. Like other experts opined throughout the event, he hinted that speculation was driving up fuel prices.
"I believe that the true price of oil today is between $65 and $85. The rest is determined by forces outside the normal demand-supply situation," he said. He added that no airline could take profitable positions with oil at $130.
On Emirates placing massive orders for new aircraft and expanding routes in a scenario when other airlines are looking to consolidate, Clark said it was important to look at new ways to maximise asset productivity. "We focus on making the aircraft work harder," he said.
Finally, Clark said Emirates is gearing up to take its first deliveries of new aircraft in July and will continue to expand its route network. "Global markets are robust," said Clark.
"We also have to keep pace with the infrastructural developments in Dubai in terms of new airports and the like."