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Pandemic drags Emirates to US $5.5bn loss, its first in 33 years

15 June 2021 03:39 pm - 0     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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REUTERS: Emirates said Dubai’s government would continue to support the airline through the coronavirus pandemic after posting an annual loss of $5.5 billion, its first in more than three decades.

The airline's chairman Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum said on Tuesday that the recovery from the COVID-19 crisis would be patchy and that no one could predict when it would end.

Dubai's government had injected an extra US $1.1 billion into the airline since disclosing a US $2 billion lifeline last year, Emirates said in its annual report for the year to March 31.

State-owned Emirates is not the only national carrier to get government help during the coronavirus crisis, which has brought air travel to a standstill.

On Monday, Germany’s Lufthansa, which was forced to take 9 billion euros (US $11 billion) in aid in 2020, laid out plans to return to profit as a leaner, more thinly-staffed airline with fewer planes after the pandemic.

Emirates, whose entire operation is dependent on international travel, fell to a loss of US $5.5 billion, down from a Us $288 million profit a year ago, as revenue plunged 66% to U s$8.4 billion and passenger traffic fell 88.3 percent to 6.6 million.

It is 36-year-old Emirates' first annual loss since 1987-88 and its lowest number of passengers carried in twenty years.

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