STUDY CLAIMS EMIRATES HAS WORLD’S LONG-HAUL LARGEST FLEET

Dino D'Amore
By Dino D'Amore December 5, 2010 10:31

STUDY CLAIMS EMIRATES HAS WORLD’S LONG-HAUL LARGEST FLEET

A new study by consultancy firm Arthur D Little claims that Emirates now has the world’s largest long-haul fleet with 155 aircraft, overtaking German airline Lufthansa.

The study has also claimed that the major European carriers like Air France-KLM Group, British Airways and Lufthansa will lose market share to Gulf airlines in the near future. The low operating costs of airlines such as Emirates, Etihad Airways and Qatar Airways helps make them more competitive and profitable, the study said. This has long been a bug bear of European carriers who argue the only reason the Gulf carriers have grown so large and so profitable is because they are supported by government subsidies, with many placing export credit financing into that stable.

Tim Clark, president of Emirates has been forced to defend his airline once again in an open letter to James May, the head of the Air Transport Association of America. He said the ATA had been making “misleading and false” statements about the benefits of export credit support and that “airlines should have open access to financing,” and that, “by the same token, no airline should be singled out for restricted access to export finance.”

Clark added that Emirates has only used export credit for “just over 20% of our total financing needs”.

The Emirates Airlines president also pointed out to May that an ATA position paper that found that its financing costs were cheaper than those at Delta was misleading because the aircraft in questions for Delta were for older aircraft that typically have higher funding costs, while Emirates financing is for all-new planes.

Dino D'Amore
By Dino D'Amore December 5, 2010 10:31
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