Emirates confident of African future

EMIRATES increased its African operations by over 40 percent, says Tim Clark, president of the airline.
“Today, Emirates fleet investment in Africa tops $7bn with operating costs of over $2bn. We will add around 10 destinations in the next decade and will continue our investment and commitment to introduce more frequencies to our existing points to provide critical links to emerging markets from Asia, the Middle East and Australia," he says.
Clark believes Africa is still an under-served market. “Emirates will continue to channel traffic through the Dubai hub which has already become a key gateway for the African continent,” he added.
Emirates carried over 40,000 tons of cargo between Africa and China in the past five years. With over 500,000 African nationals now living and working in Dubai, and over 800,000 visiting every year, links between the two are definitely strengthening. During the financial year 2010-11, Africa contributed AED5.59bn in revenue to the airline, 10.5 percent of the airline’s total annual revenue and a 17.7 percent growth over the year before.
“Our long-term outlook for Africa is very positive,” added Clark. “Several regions…offer great potential for our passenger and cargo businesses. Political stability across Africa, government policies to promote air business, increasing trade with Asia, influx in foreign direct Investment, trade liberalisation and continuing consumer demand for household goods as a result of a growing middle class will positively impact our business in Africa in the future,” he said.
The airline currently operates 22 passenger and six dedicated freighter destinations to Africa.

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